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UPDATE 1-Goldman Sachs boosts U.S. GDP estimate, sees COVID relief at $1.5 trillion

·1 min read

(Adds remarks on rate hike)

Feb 8 (Reuters) - Economists at Goldman Sachs Group Incon Monday bumped their U.S. GDP forecast for the secondquarter up to 11% from 10% and said additional fiscal measuresare likely to be valued at $1.5 trillion, up from their previous$1.1 trillion estimate.

On an annual basis, they raised their forecasts for 2021 and2022 growth by 0.2 percentage points each, to 6.8% and 4.5%,respectively.

The bank's economists also said that they had broughtforward their forecast for the first rate hike by the FederalReserve from the second half of 2024 to the first half in lightof the upgrade to the growth forecast, the larger-than-expecteddecline in the unemployment rate in January, and signs of a"firmer" inflation outlook.

"We expect the FOMC to start tapering its asset purchases inearly 2022," the note said.

(Reporting by Kanishka Singh in BengaluruEditing by Sonya Hepinstall)