US Economy Surprises with 3.3% Fourth Quarter Growth, Defying Expectations

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In a surprising turn of events, the US economy exceeded expectations by growing at an annualized pace of 3.3% in the fourth quarter, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. This surpassed the consensus forecast of 2% by economists surveyed by Bloomberg. Despite concerns about a slowdown, the GDP release underscores the resilience of the US consumer and contributes to the broader trend of solid economic performance in 2023. The Federal Reserve’s goal of achieving a “soft landing” is being closely monitored, with recent data indicating strong economic fundamentals. Oxford Economics’ Ryan Sweet suggests that market expectations for Fed rate cuts in March may be premature, highlighting positive growth and declining inflation. However, Pantheon Macroeconomics’ Ian Shepherdson anticipates a potential easing by the Fed in March or May, emphasizing the need for careful consideration of economic conditions.

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