Washington, DC, United States (4E) – The U.S. economy declined in the first three months of the year, a sign that the recovery has lost its momentum since the recession ended nearly five years ago.
The country’s gross domestic product (GDP), which is the broadest measure of goods and services that the economy produced, contracted by an annual rate of 1.0 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis in the first quarter of 2014, according to the Commerce Department report released Thursday. The result marks the first decline in economic output since the first quarter of 2011, when it fell 1.3 percent.
Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal had projected Thursday’s revised GDP growth down to a 0.6 percent drop.
The official estimate was a 0.1 percent gain in GDP in the first quarter as severe winter weather lowered foot traffic at retail stores, disrupted work sites, and hit transportation networks across most parts of the country.
The revised estimate covers additional economic data released in the previous weeks. Higher-than-projected imports and slower-than-estimated inventory growth pushed the economy into contraction.