Bloomberg by the Numbers: 3.6%

Photograph by Tim Rue/Bloomberg

A worker loads a vehicle onto a car carrier for dealer delivery at the Port of Los Angeles in California.

That’s how much gross domestic product increased at an annual rate in this year’s third quarter, according to an estimate released yesterday by the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis.

The figure was the second of three estimates of how fast the economy grew in July, August and September. The newer estimate was revised upward from a 2.8 percent gain, an initial estimate that was released last month.

The 3.6 percent annualized gain is the strongest since the first quarter of 2012.

The economy “expanded more in the third quarter than initially estimated as unsold merchandise piled up at the fastest rate since early 1998, setting the stage for a possible slowdown in the final three months of the year,” Bloomberg’s Victoria Stilwell reported.

The third estimate of third-quarter GDP growth will be released Dec. 20.

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