US GDP growth rate revised slightly higher to 2.1% for Q4

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The US economy grew at a slightly quicker pace than previously thought during the fourth quarter, according to a revised report published on Thursday.

The gross domestic product, the country’s total output of goods and services, grew at an annualised rate of 2.1 per cent in the final three months of last year, according to a final reading issued by the Commerce Department. That compares with analysts’ expectations for 2 per cent growth and the previous two readings of 1.9 per cent.

While the figure exceeds the pace of growth seen during the first half of 2016, it is still a marked slowdown from the 3.5 per cent growth recorded during the third quarter.

Although the revised report showed that consumer spending grew at a 3.5 per cent rate — stronger than the 3 per cent initially estimated — that gain was offset by the drop in exports.

“The deceleration in real GDP in the fourth quarter reflected downturns in exports and in federal government spending, an acceleration in imports, and a deceleration in nonresidential fixed investment that were partly offset by accelerations in private inventory investment and in PCE, and upturns in residential fixed investment and in state and local government spending,” according to the report.

Overall, the US economy grew 1.6 per cent over 2016 as a whole, its weakest year in five years.

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