So apparently, we have a new installment called “WTF is GDP these days?”
When the BEA data said Q1 GDP was -4.8 percent, I thought it was wildly understated. My back of the envelope Unemployment based calculation put GDP at -20%.
I shouldn’t have anchored on that -4.8%. KPMG chief economist Constance Hunter’s model had GDP at -30%. Constance informs me the next update (out next week) is looking like -38%.
The latest addition to the series comes from the Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow. The model’s number? An astonishing contraction of 42.8%.
From Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta:
The GDPNow model estimate for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the second quarter of 2020 is -42.8 percent on May 15, down from -34.9 percent on May 8. After this week’s data releases from the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, and the U.S. Census Bureau, the nowcasts of second-quarter real personal consumption expenditures growth and real gross private domestic investment growth decreased from -33.9 percent and -62.8 percent, respectively, to -43.6 percent and -69.4 percent, respectively.