U.S. economic growth slowed in first quarter, falling short of forecasts

U.S. economic growth slowed more than expected in first quarter of 2024, with inflation-weary consumers tightening their belts and spending less, the government reported on Thursday.

The figures published by the bureau of Economic Analysis showed gross domestic product rose at a 1.6% annualized clip during the first three months of the year, after increasing 3.4% in the fourth quarter of 2023.

The pullback in consumer spending comes alongside higher prices and interest rates.

“This was an interesting mix of data signals, and the ultimate result is higher U.S. yields, lower equities and a stronger dollar,” Kyle Chapman, FX Markets Analyst at Ballinger Group, stated. “Growth momentum is evidently cooling off sharply from the stellar pace from the second half of last year and, while the U.S. exceptionalism story remains intact, we are starting to see cracks appear in the hard data.”

The consensus among economists surveyed by FactSet was that gross domestic product grew at a 2.2% rate last quarter, down from a revised 3.4% in the last three months of 2023.

— This is a developing story.

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