On the surface, the just printed revised Q2 GDP number was great: following a preliminary print of 1.7%, the just revised number of 2.5% (beating expectations of 2.2%), up from 1.1% in Q1, should make everyone happy (well not the market which desperately need bad news to go higher). However, as usual, the real news is underneath the surface, which is where we find that both real components of GDP growth, Personal Consumption and Fixed Investment were actually revised lower from the preliminary print. Specifically, Personal Consumption as a contributor of the 2.5% final number was revised from 1.22% to 1.21% (well below the average Personal Consumption number since 2010 of 1.58%), while Fixed Investment was revised from 0.93% to 0.90%. So where did the 0.8% upside come from? It came entire from net trade, which contributed precisely 0.8%. Imports were revised from detracting 1.51% from GDP to just -1.11%, while exports added not 0.71% as previously expected but 1.11%, thus changing the net trade contribution from -0.80% to 0.00%. The remaining two components, Inventories and Government Consumption, were a wash, with one adding 0.2% while the other subtracted 0.1% from the preliminary number.
So what happens going forward: well, with China on the rocks and tightening, the Emerging Markets in free fall, and Europe still a net exporter (so not benefiting the US), anyone hoping this trade led-recovery will be sustainable, will be disappointed. But for now, this is the final GDP print the Fed will have before the Taper decision, which following this report is now assured.