The U.S. commerce department will release its advance third-quarter GDP estimate for the country Thursday, and analysts expect a slowdown in economic expansion in the July through September period. According to Bloomberg, expectations are that after the second quarter’s brisk 3.9 percent growth, the third quarter is likely to disappoint with a growth of approximately 1.7 percent.
The GDP report will provide an indication of how the U.S. economy has handled recent turmoil in China and other emerging economies. Weaker global demand adversely impacts exports -- which support economic growth -- and a stronger dollar helps imports, which drag down the GDP.
However, an early look at U.S. trade balance in September signals a big drop in the trade deficit. The trade gap in goods, which rose to $67.2 billion in August, fell to $58.6 billion last month. A drop in oil prices, caused by a global supply glut, might have played a key role in reducing the country’s import expenditure.
Firming housing and labor markets are expected to shore up the GDP by boosting consumer spending, which accounts for two-thirds of the U.S. economic activity. Last month, for instance, home values and rental prices showed a steady rise -- seemingly insulated from the effects of a slowing global economy.
However, despite this, the third-quarter GDP is likely to have slowed sharply over the second quarter, when growth exceeded economists’ expectations of 3.7 percent.
“It's not going to look pretty, but I don't think the policy implications from the Fed's perspective are overly significant,” Ryan Sweet, a senior economist at Moody's Analytics in West Chester, Pennsylvania, told Reuters. Earlier, on Wednesday, the U.S. Federal Reserve indicated it will look for progress in employment and labor when considering a rate hike at its December meeting.