Goldman hikes third-quarter GDP growth estimate to 1.9%

FILE PHOTO: Shipping containers are seen at a terminal inside the Port of Oakland, California

By Stephen Culp

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs boosted its third-quarter GDP growth estimate by a full percentage point, to 1.9% from 0.9%, on Wednesday after a series of economic indicators exceeded expectations.

The broker in a note cited the "above potential" September increase in private-sector employment, reflected in payroll processor ADP's National Employment index, and the narrowing trade deficit in August, which was "stronger than our previous expectations," wrote a team led by Jan Hatzius, Goldman's chief economist.

The ADP report showed private employment grew by 208,000 last month, a 12.4% acceleration from the upwardly-revised August figure, while the Commerce Department's report on international trade showed the import/export gap shrank in August to its narrowest reading since May 2021.

An economic cool-down is the goal of the Federal Reserve's recent string of steep interest rate hikes, deployed to tackle decades-high inflation.

But market participants have worried the Fed's actions to cool demand could push the economy into contraction.

A separate note released by the firm on Tuesday said it sees a 35% probability that the U.S. economy will enter recession in the next 12 months.

(Reporting by Stephen Culp; Editing by Nick Zieminski)