Profits from current production (corporate profits with inventory valuation and capital consumption adjustments) decreased $31.4 billion in the fourth quarter, in contrast to an increase of $499.6 billion in the third quarter.
Note: Corporate profits are not available with the first (advance) estimate of GDP for each quarter. For the fourth quarter only, corporate profits are not available in the first or second estimates.
- Current Release: March 25, 2021
- Next Release: May 27, 2021
Corporate profits represents the portion of the total income earned from current production that is accounted for by U.S. corporations. The estimates of corporate profits are an integral part of the national income and product accounts (NIPAs), a set of accounts prepared by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) that provides a logical and consistent framework for presenting statistics on U.S. economic activity.
Corporate profits is one of the most closely watched U.S. economic indicators. Profitability provides a summary measure of corporate financial health and thus serves as an essential indicator of economic performance. Profits are a source of retained earnings, providing much of the funding for capital investments that raise productive capacity. The estimates of profits and of related measures may also be used to evaluate the effects on corporations of changes in policy or in economic conditions.
What are Corporate Profits?
Corporations' combined earnings from current production, with breakdowns by industry. These statistics are closely watched as a summary of corporate America's financial health and as an important U.S. economic indicator.