The Conference Board uses cookies to improve our website, enhance your experience, and deliver relevant messages and offers about our products. Detailed information on the use of cookies on this site is provided in our cookie policy. For more information on how The Conference Board collects and uses personal data, please visit our privacy policy. By continuing to use this Site or by clicking "OK", you consent to the use of cookies. 

CHARTS

Forecast Update: 2021 rebound may be stronger than previously expected

The Conference Board is upgrading its forecast of 2021 US GDP growth from 3.6 percent y/y to 4.1 percent y/y. US macroeconomic indicators signal that the rebound in 4Q20 held up better than we’d originally forecast, yielding an expected quarterly growth rate of 3.5 percent q/q (quarter-over-quarter, seasonally adjusted and annualized). This improvement put the recovery on a stronger footing as the US economy entered 2021. Furthermore, the passage of an additional $900 bln of fiscal support and the approval of two COVID-19 vaccines in December pull strength that we had previously expected to boost growth in 2Q21 forward into 1Q21. This results in a forecast of 2.0 percent q/q for 1Q21. Finally, the outcome of the Senate races in Georgia now make the prospect of additional fiscal support much more likely. We expect it to be deployed in the spring and therefore maintain our strong 2Q21 forecast.

Looking further into the year, we continue to predict very strong growth over the summer as large-scale vaccine deployment unlocks pent-up consumer demand for services. This results in 3Q21 growth of 6.1 percent q/q. The pace of the recovery then slows to 4.6 percent q/q in 4Q21. We now expect US economic output to return to prepandemic levels in 3Q21, a quarter earlier than previously forecasted.

For more details on our new US forecast and two additional recovery scenarios please click here.

FILTER BY CENTER

Our Experts

Thought leaders who provide trusted insights for navigating companies and the economy though COVID-19.

BartVanArk1.jpg

Bart van Ark

Managing Director and Principal Investigator

LynnFranco1.jpg

Lynn Franco

Director, Economic Indicators and Surveys

Ataman.jpg

Ataman Ozyildirim

Senior Director, Economics and Global Research Chair

MatteoTonello.jpg

Matteo Tonello

Managing Director, Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG)

GadLevanon.jpg

Gad Levanon, PhD

Vice President, Labor Markets

DavidHoffman1.jpg

David Hoffman

Senior Vice President Asia and Managing Director of the China Center for Economics & Business

Ray, Rebecca 120 x 120.jpg

Rebecca L. Ray, PhD

Executive Vice President, Human Capital

Schrader, Anke 120x120.jpg

Anke Schrader

Research Director, the China Center for Economics and Business

AmyAbel.jpg

Amy Lui Abel, PhD

Vice President, Human Capital Research

ThomasSinger.jpg

Thomas Singer

Principal Researcher

Uwe-Portrait-120x120.jpg

Dr. Uwe G. Schulte

Leader, Global Sustainability Centre and Program Director

Washington.jpg

Paul Washington

Executive Director, ESG Center

IlariaMaselli.jpg

Ilaria Maselli

Senior Economist

rsz_popiela__amanda.jpg

Amanda Popiela

Researcher, Human Capital

ElizabethCrofoot.jpg

Elizabeth Crofoot

Senior Economist

JohnForsyth.jpg

John Forsyth

Consumer Dynamics Leader, M&C Center

CindyCisneros.jpg

Cindy Cisneros

Vice President of Education Programs

Odland, Steve 120x120.jpg

Steve Odland

President and CEO

JeffHoffman.jpg

Jeff Hoffman

Institute Leader, Corporate Citizenship & Philanthropy, ESG Center

JoeMinarik.jpg

Joseph J. Minarik

Senior Vice President and Director of Research

ErickLundh.jpg

Erik Lundh

Principal Economist

RobinEriksen.jpg

Robin Erickson, PhD

Principal Researcher, Human Capital

JP.jpg

JP Kuehlwein

Marketing Leader, M&C Center

DeniseDahlhoff.jpg

Denise Dahlhoff, PhD

Senior Researcher, Consumer Research

Sabattini, Laura 120x120.jpg

Laura Sabattini, PhD

Principal Researcher, Human Capital

Schwarz Robert.JPG

Robert Schwarz

Senior Researcher, ESG Center

Chiqui.jpg

Chiqui Cartagena

Former Chief Marketing Officer & Center Leader, Marketing & Communications

Dr. Mahdy Al Jazzaf1.png

Dr. Mahdy Al Jazzaf

Executive Director

DevinOConnor.jpg

Devin O’Connor

Former Deputy Director, Economic Research

OTHER RELATED CONTENT

CONFERENCES & EVENTS

Support Our Work

Support our nonpartisan, nonprofit research and insights that help leaders address societal challenges.

Donate