The U.S. economy grew at a somewhat faster 2.1% pace in the third quarter instead of 1.5%, revised government figures show. The chief reason: inventories of newly produced but unsold goods increased more than originally estimated. The value of business inventories climbed $90.2 billion vs. an initial read of $56.8 billion. Consumer spending, the main engine of U.S. economic growth, rose 3% instead of 3.2%. Exports edged up 0.9%, less than the prior 1.9% estimate, while imports rose a somewhat stronger 2.1%. Business investment was mixed. Spending fell 7.1% on structures but rose 9.5% on equipment. Inflation as measured by the PCE index increased at a 1.3% annual clip.
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