Real gross domestic product increased 0.1% in Q4/12, a 0.2 percentage point upward revision, from the advance estimate released in January, according to estimates released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

GDP increased 3.1% in Q3/12. Real GDP increased 2.2% in 2012, after increasing 1.8% in 2011.

The BEA said the following contributed to the deceleration in real GDP growth:

  • Inventory investment turned down, largely resulting from downturns in inventory investment in manufacturing industries and wholesale trade.

  • Federal government spending on defense declined after rising in the third quarter.

  • Exports turned down, mainly reflecting downturns in nonautomotive capital goods as well as foods, feeds and beverages.

    In contrast, the BEA said, imports decreased more than in the third quarter. Business investment turned up, primarily reflecting an upturn in equipment and software. Consumer spending also picked up slightly, mainly on financial services and insurance as well as autos and parts.

    Net exports were revised up, reflecting an upward revision to exports and a downward revision to imports. Nonresidential fixed investment was also revised up, primarily due to an upward revision to structures. Inventory investment was revised down, as were state and local government spending and consumer spending.

    The pickup in growth in 2012 mainly reflected:

  • A deceleration in imports, mainly in non-automotive capital goods and in petroleum and related products.

  • An upturn in residential housing.

  • An upturn in inventory investment.

  • A smaller decrease in state and local government spending. The contributions were partly offset by slowdowns in consumer spending, mainly on services, and in exports.

    To read the full BEA report, click here.