US Third Quarter GDP Up Annualized 33.1 Percent

US real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 33.1 percent in the third quarter of 2020 according to the “advance” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the second quarter, real GDP decreased 31.4 percent.

The GDP estimate released today is based on source data that are incomplete or subject to further revision by the source agency. The “second” estimate for the third quarter, based on more complete data, will be released on November 25, 2020.

Current‑dollar GDP increased 38.0 percent, or $1.64 trillion, in the third quarter to a level of $21.16 trillion. In the second quarter, GDP decreased 32.8 percent, or $2.04 trillion.

The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 3.4 percent in the third quarter, in contrast to a decrease of 1.4 percent in the second quarter. The PCE price index increased 3.7 percent, in contrast to a decrease of 1.6 percent. Excluding food and energy prices, the PCE price index increased 3.5 percent, in contrast to a decrease of 0.8 percent.

Personal Income

Current-dollar personal income decreased $540.6 billion in the third quarter, in contrast to an increase of $1.45 trillion in the second quarter. The decrease in personal income was more than accounted for by a decrease in personal current transfer receipts (notably, government social benefits related to pandemic relief programs) that was partly offset by increases in compensation and proprietors’ income. Additional information on several factors impacting personal income can be found in “Effects of Selected Federal Pandemic Response Programs on Personal Income.”

Disposable personal income decreased $636.7 billion, or 13.2 percent, in the third quarter, in contrast to an increase of $1.60 trillion, or 44.3 percent, in the second quarter. Real disposable personal income decreased 16.3 percent, in contrast to an increase of 46.6 percent.

Personal saving was $2.78 trillion in the third quarter, compared with $4.71 trillion in the second quarter. The personal saving rate—personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income—was 15.8 percent in the third quarter, compared with 25.7 percent in the second quarter.

SOURCES- BEA (U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis )
Written By Brian Wang,

18 thoughts on “US Third Quarter GDP Up Annualized 33.1 Percent”

  1. It's the trend you watch, not the number on a specific date. GDP is a lagging indicator. The market is a leading indicator. And, nobody claimed they "evened out". Contraction and expansion almost never do over short periods of time.

  2. This would be great if we had done it while practicing sane and rational precautions against Coronavirus to prevent unnecessary death and loss of health. That would be a real success story. This, it's like, yeah, we can keep fighting when we buckle on the ground like a fish. Keep fighting, America, and maybe we can stand up to get kicked in the face again! It's not exactly jiu-jitsu we're doing here, more like a bar room brawl or elementary school kids rolling around on the playground pavement while the teacher (scientists, doctors, the media, and roughly half of all voters) fails to intervene like a responsible adult should.

  3. Kinda like all those mass-extinction events in deep-time, and at just the right intervals for a full recovery in between, probably accelerated things along the evolution path so we could be here (and before the Sun gets too hot to permit us to be here in another billion years or so).

  4. Biased title

    The USA is declining 5% yoy
    China is growing 3%
    China is winning
    The USA are losing

    Just saying


  5. More like 1/8th for GDP, based on numbers given.
    Down around 5% to 95% Q1, then another 33% Q2 to 64%, then up 38% Q3 to 88% – so 12% down going into Q4.

    And I doubt we'll see huge new shutdowns – politicos in most states are too scared of damage to economy. New York is trying 'cluster' shutdowns – red zones shut down, surrounding 'orange' zones sort of shutdown-light, and 'yellow' zone "new normal" – masks and such. And some states simply won't shutdown again – they'll let it run, maybe require masks, etc.

    If Biden wins and in Q1-2021 decides to mandate some nationwide Covid19 program, he'll likely try to show he has a smarter plan, that avoids re-frying the economy – doing shutdowns more selectively like NY, dumping money into contact tracing, 'targeted allocation' of whatever vaccine stocks we get, etc.

  6. Don't forget that there's a psychological effect of seeing the 31% figure. Ordinary people aren't going to immediately calculate whether it evens out — they're going to see the beautiful 31% number. The market isn't made of billiard balls, it's made of people — and the behavior of these people is dominated by their psychology. Therefore when they see the beautiful number, it will have an impact on their behavior, whether or not that number is substantiated or not.

  7. Correct. So if it started at 100%, went down to 70%, then came the whole way back up to 100% it's a loss. We missed out on all the productivity when the economy was down to 70%. It's gone. Lost to time. We can't get it back.

    All we could do is to push for higher GDP next quarter to back-fill some of the losses.

    Plus here's something people don't like to hear, but every now and then a financial beating is good. It forces companies to innovate and find new ways to stay competitive. Many had people working from home, which at first was a major hassle, but then became normalized. If you can get 90% of everything done from home, then why maintain the expense of the brick/mortar office?

    When we rebuild the economy, a lot of the wastefulness will remain gone. It's been phased out. New growth can be better growth.

  8. Which is still down about 1/3 from where it used to be, and we’re going into another large and huge Covid shut down.

  9. I just want to point out that these don't even out, because it's a percent change from the previous quarter.

    If in quarter 1 you start with 100, and it decreases by 31%, it is 100*(1-0.31) = 69 in quarter 2. And if you increase 69 by 33%, it is 69*(1+0.33) = 91.77 in quarter 3; still less than quarter 1.

    If it continues to rebound we'll catch up to and probably exceed quarter 1 GDP and hopefully catch up to quarter 4 of last year. This still represents an overall GDP contraction for the year because it doesn't make up for the missing GDP in quarters 2 and 3. It bodes well for next year, though.

  10. 0% this year would be a great achievement. But keep in mind, it's semi artificial, because of the stimulus, ans a second one likely in a month or so.

  11. So we are heading for a 0% growth this year. Much more positive than earlier estimates. Amazing how flexible and easy to accelerate our economy is when is given a chance.

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