Fourth-quarter GDP rose only 2.1% and full-year 2019 posts slowest growth in three years at 2.3%

  • The U.S. economy grew 2.1% in the fourth quarter, matching estimates.
  • The 2.3% growth in U.S. gross domestic product for the full year was below the 2.9% increase from 2018 and the 2.4% gain in 2017.
  • It also was well below the White House’s projections following the 2017 tax revamp.
  • Continued gains in consumer spending helped propel the economy in the year’s final three months.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. economy grew 2.1% in the fourth quarter, closing out a year in which gross domestic product decelerated to its slowest pace in three years amid a continuing drag in business investment.

The GDP increase matched the third quarter and met expectations of economists surveyed by Dow Jones. For the full year, the economy grew 2.3%, below the 2.9% increase from 2018 and the 2.4% gain in 2017, the first year of Donald Trump’s presidency, according to the initial estimate released Thursday by the Commerce Department.

The move in 2019 was well below the White House’s projections following the 2017 tax bill that cut corporate and individual rates. The administration has said the stimulus would lead to GDP increases of at least 3%, but that hasn’t happened yet.

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