Economic growth and inflation accelerated in the first quarter.

The Advance report for Real GDP revealed an extraordinary quarter to start the year. Total economic activity increased by 6.4% after growing by 4.3% in the last quarter of 2020. The first quarter growth was driven by a huge 10.7% increase in personal consumption expenditures, which is 70% of the total economy. This is still well below the 41% growth in PCE for the third quarter of last year, but that was from a much lower base. The growth in the first quarter was almost all from an increase in goods purchases. Durable goods sales increased by 41.4% and nondurable goods sales were up by 14.4%.