U.S. economic growth likely accelerated in the first quarter, fueled by massive government aid to households and businesses, charting the course for what is expected to be the strongest performance this year in nearly four decades.
The United States’ economy is rebounding more quickly compared to its global rivals, thanks to two additional rounds of COVID-19 relief money from Washington as well as easing anxiety over the pandemic, which has boosted domestic demand and allowed services businesses like restaurants and bars to reopen.
Though the anticipated pick-up in gross domestic product last quarter would leave output just below its level at the end of 2019, the economy remains at least a couple of years away from fully recovering from the pandemic recession, which started in February 2020.
“It will be a solid GDP number,” said Ryan Sweet, a senior economist at Moody’s Analytics in West Chester, Pennsylvania. “It’s one small milestone in many that we have to hit before we can say we have fully recovered from the recession.”