First reading on third-quarter GDP showed a three percent growth as an increase in inventory investment and a smaller trade deficit offset a hurricane-related slowdown. Jade Barker reports.
U.S. GDP grew at a three percent annual rate in the third quarter, despite two back-to-back hurricanes. That after a similar expansion in a quarter before. Bankrate's Mark Hamrick: (SOUNDBITE) MARK HAMRICK, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF AND SENIOR ECONOMIC ANALYST, BAKRATE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "What was nice to see was, both, positive contributions coming from the consumer, spending money, as well as business investment. And you need to have both of those hitting on cylinders to have a good looking GDP reading like this. There were a couple of negatives, investment or spending on structures, such as, basically, commercial and residential real estate. That's a negative here. And also government spending is a negative. But it looks like the outlook for at least the U.S. housing market is perhaps firm in the near term at best." The Commerce Department said it couldn't estimate the impact of hurricanes Harvey and Irma just yet. But preliminary numbers showed about $130 billion in damages. But post-hurricane jobs, retail sales and industrial production numbers showed the U.S. economy is still going strong. Analysts say the positive first read of the third quarter GDP only affirms that the Federal Reserve will hike interest rates in December.