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GDP Growth Slows in 2nd Quarter

This morning, the Commerce Department said that the U.S. economy expanded at a 2.4 percent annual rate in the second quarter — about what economists expected. That rate is down from a 3.7 percent annual rate in the first quarter

Nonresidential fixed investment drove growth, increasing at a 17 percent annual pace, up from a 7.8 percent annual pace in the first quarter. Businesses increased their purchases of equipment and software spending by 21.9 percent. Consumer spending, which makes up about 60 percent of the economy, grew at only a 1.6 percent annual pace — worryingly slow. That is a sign that unemployment, underemployment and concern about the weak recovery are keeping consumers from opening their wallets; it is also a cause and an effect of the lagging recovery.

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