US economy matches UK growth rate during 2013

The US economy grew at an annualised rate of 3.2 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2013, according to initial estimates from the US Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA).

It was a decrease from the annualised growth of 4.1 per cent seen in the third quarter but was in line with analysts’ expectations.

It meant that the US economy expanded by 1.9 per cent in 2013, matching the rate of growth seen by the UK last year.

Article continues after advert

According to the BEA, the drop in the growth rate was partly down to lower “private inventory investment”, which is a measure referring to companies producing more than they sell.

Economists view this as a form of spending when companies do it deliberately, stockpiling goods in anticipation of increased sales.

There was also a deceleration in spending from both the federal government and from state and local governments.

Consumer spending was a big driver of growth during the quarter though, as it was in the UK.

The US quarterly measure of growth differs to that of the UK in that it takes the economic growth for the quarter and multiplies to make it an annualised figure.