Gross domestic product, the broadest measure of goods and services produced across the U.S., grew at a seasonally and inflation adjusted annual rate of just 1.2% in the second quarter, the Commerce Department said Friday, well below the pace economists expected.

Economic growth is now tracking at a 1% rate in 2016--the weakest start to a year since 2011--when combined with a downwardly revised reading for the first quarter. That makes for an annual average rate of 2.1% growth since the end of the recession, the weakest pace of any expansion since at least 1949.


Mr. Daco and other economists expect growth to accelerate in the third quarter, but the weak first half means 2016 is likely to come in below an already disappointing trend. In another worrisome sign, S&P 500 companies are expected to report what is likely to be the fourth straight quarter of declining profits, down 3.7% from second-quarter 2015, according to a Thomson Reuters survey of analysts' forecasts. Revenues are expected to decline 1.2%.

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