Here Is The Reason For The Total Collapse In Q1 GDP

Tyler Durden's picture

Remember back in April, when the first GDP estimate was released (a gargantuan by comparison 0.1% hence revised to a depression equivalent -2.9%), we wrote: "If It Wasn't For Obamacare, Q1 GDP Would Be Negative." Well, now that GDP is not only negative, but the worst it has been in five years, we are once again proven right. But not only because GDP was indeed negative, but because the real reason for today's epic collapse in GDP was, you guessed it, Obamacare.

Here is the chart we posted in April, showing the contribution of Obamacare, aka Healthcare Services spending. It was, in a word, an all time high.


Turns out this number was based on.... nothing.

Because as the next chart below shows, between the second and final revision of Q1 GDP something dramatic happened: instead of contributing $40 billion to real GDP in Q1, Obamacare magically ended up subtracting $6.4 billion from GDP. This, in turn, resulted in a collapse in Personal Consumption Expenditures as a percentage of GDP to just 0.7%, the lowest since 2009!

Don't worry thought: this is actually great news! Because the brilliant propaganda minds at the Dept of Commerce figured out something banks also realized with the stub "kitchen sink" quarter in November 2008. Namely, since Q1 is a total loss in GDP terms, let's just remove Obamacare spending as a contributor to Q1 GDP and just shove it in Q2.

Stated otherwise, some $40 billion in PCE that was supposed to boost Q1 GDP will now be added to Q2-Q4.

And now, we all await as the US department of truth says, with a straight face, that in Q2 the US GDP "grew" by over 5% (no really: you'll see).

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order66's picture

Should be solid fuel for the next leg up in stocks.

Headbanger's picture

See, we need to legalize the "sex worker" industry as part of the mental health care system and GDP goes positve in no time!

SilverIsKing's picture

They can't fool me with this mumbo jumbo.

I know the dastardly weather is behind all this.

Gaius Frakkin' Baltar's picture

Something like +5% GDP will be a great election time talking point. It will be hilarious though, if the market is in free-fall when they try to pull out that card.

max2205's picture

Macro data can't kill this monster bull run....invisible hand...job


Get over it

Stoploss's picture

Paging: !!! !!!


Janet Yellen, please report to the print room.

Janet Yellen !!!!!! please report to the print room .

Chupacabra-322's picture

It's one Huge Fucking Ponzi scheme. There is only the illusion of Free Markets. What we have now is pure unadulterated Fascism.



FritoPendejo's picture

Another fake-rally is in the offing. 

Charles Wilson's picture

War means work for all!

Ask your Representative for moar WAR today!

madbraz's picture

this is Robert Rubin/Larry Summers logic/manipulation 101 at its best. 

Winston Churchill's picture

Well, if you're going to post a loss, write off everything you can.

pods's picture

That was my thought as well.  Since Q1 was shitty, they will move spending to Q2 to avoid the recession tag.


NoDebt's picture

In agreement with both of you and the Tylers on this one.  They totally kitchen-sinked this quarter, for the dramatic (or maybe not so dramatic) upturn in Q2.

Markets obviously agree- they're going nowhere right now.  And why should they move?  The (increasingly-rare) 100 pt. drop that happened yesterday was everyone who already got told this number in advance lightening up.

fonzannoon's picture

I will take the other side. Food/energy costs etc and weaker housing are draining discretionary income to the point where they won't even fake a whopper. Maybe they go with 3.5% but that's as high as I see. That will be enough to keep the docile imbecile population in check.

Winston Churchill's picture

Anything positive,for Q2, will do at this point Fonz.To avoid the R word at all costs.

BlindMonkey's picture

100% agree. There will be ZERO recognition of reality until after November. The Dem/statists will lay the blame at the Rep/statists after the election and bleat about how bad they are. The Dem/statists are looking like they are going to get shelled and a recognized recession will only make it worse.

halfasleep's picture

with all the agreement here on the hedge today (napkin est. 175% increase yoy), i'm thinking it just might be near end time.

NoDebt's picture

At +3.5% Q2 you're the second-highest estimate on the street.  All the 5%-er guys have chickened out and dropped down into the 3s.

Which, of course, probably means it will print at +5%.

EDIT:  Goldman just boosted their Q2 call from +3.8% to +4.0% (they were the one above you, now further above).  Reason cited: pretty much what the Tylers just explained in this article.


LostandFound's picture

Let me guess, first quarter contraction, second quarter growth, third quater contraction, fourth quarter growth. Overall GDP negative but not in recession?

GetZeeGold's picture



but because the real reason for today's epic collapse in GDP was, you guessed it, Obamacare.



Do I win something?

101 years and counting's picture

must lower bar to get Q2 GDP to be up 2%.  and thats how its done.  afterall, if q1 gdp was -1%, q2 would have been 0%.  now, they can put lipstick on the fat hog (the economy, not Yellen).

Seasmoke's picture

I don't think lipstick will even help this time. That hog is dead, bloated and floating upside down in a river in China. 


This is not a recession.  ITS A FUCKING DEPRESSION !!!!!

SilverIsKing's picture

Then we should all be buying stawks ahead of the Q2 announcement.

Seasmoke's picture

Obama don't care. 

GetZeeGold's picture



Most narcissistic sociopaths don't.

Everybodys All American's picture

The collapse of the US economy is being engineered and orchestrated by Obama. This is part of his plan of his transformation. Make no mistake this is not accidental mistakes of a presidential policy gone wrong.

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

you may be right about this is the plan, but then what are the american people going to do about it?? so far what they have done is absolutely nuthin.

Mike in GA's picture

Barack Obama hate white people. (To use urban vernacular)


Agent P's picture

Initial estimate probably looked at all the people that signed up for Obamacare, and the revision took into account how many actually paid their premiums. 

pods's picture

It was me, I put Obamacare in my cart but then forgot to check out.


rosiescenario's picture

Just my own case, but it is probably like many others'....we were forced off an insurance policy onto one with a deductible 250% higher but which covered things for which we shall never have a need. The premium also is about 20% higher than what was paid before.The major beneficiary has been the insurance company which is still the same one, getting paid more while providing less. Some how I am not surprised as the insurance industry is far better represented in D.C. than my wife or I are.


With the far higher deductible we now have less to spend on other things.

Gaius Frakkin' Baltar's picture

I knew they were fudging something. That sounds about right. Banana-economics...

DaddyO's picture

The only fudge in DC is being packed...


BlindMonkey's picture

Nice base hit on the softball setup. :)

youngman's picture

Their estimates on Obamacare are all wrong..and will be for a long long time...but they will lie to cover it goes against their dream of Obamacare as a great thing....

DaveyJones's picture

sort of like their estimates on Iraq

and, come to think of it, it is an invasion  

Spungo's picture

I was in the pool! I was in the pool!

DaveyJones's picture

"Obamacare magically ended up subtracting $6.4 billion from GDP"

magic like witchcraft?

IronShield's picture

Relax my Bitchez; the PPT got yo back.  ;-)

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

rubin and obuma on the phone, Obuma" call the norway fund right now, tell them to buy buy buy..

rubin" ah thats not possible they tapped out on EU co's equity"

obuma" then call yeller eer yellin that fat jew and tell her buy buy buy"

rubin " hey she's not that fat"

BlindMonkey's picture

Mr Yellen is sensitive about comments of it's weight. Mr Yellen has become angry. Mr Yellen will remove the punch bowl now. No QE for you.

Awakened Sheeple's picture

And the vix is now down for the day. Well done Mr. Henry.

Racer's picture

As are all the numbers the US gobmint spit out... all based on nothing

Hindenburg...Oh Man's picture

they have written off Q1 GDP in order to save Q2 thereby avoiding a quote-unquote recession.

buzzsaw99's picture

remember that bullshit number we gave you a few months ago? well, here is the new (revised) bullshit number. [/orwell]

Tapeworm's picture

Well, there is an election coming up.

buzzsaw99's picture

you're not supposed to dig dammit! just read the headline and hit "SELL"!!

hootowl's picture

When can we expect Germany to attack the U.S. for heisting its national gold reserves?

cooky puss's picture

Just because Germany is starting to investigate on Merkel's phone tapping doesn't necessarily mean they're growing balls enough to do that. Too bad