Second-quarter GDP plunged by worst-ever 31.7% as economy went into lockdown

A second reading of the U.S. economy in the second quarter reflected the biggest quarterly plunge in activity on record, though the plummet wasn’t as bad as initially estimated.

Gross domestic product from April to June tanked 31.7% on an annualized basis, according to the Commerce Department’s second reading released on Thursday. That was revised down from the 32.9% initial estimate of the damage the pandemic-fueled lockdowns had on the economy in the second quarter.

Economists surveyed by Refinitiv had expected a more minor decline of 32.5%.

Even with the revision, it was still the worst contraction in the economy ever recorded. The drop in GDP was more than triple the previous all-time decline. The economy contracted at a 5.0% pace in the first quarter.

The economy entered recession in February.

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