Widespread Spending Propels U.S. Economy

The world’s largest economy grew faster in the third quarter than first estimated, capping its strongest six months in a decade, as consumers went shopping and companies boosted spending.

Gross domestic product rose at a 3.9 percent annualized rate, exceeding all forecasts of economists surveyed by Bloomberg and up from an initial estimate of 3.5 percent, revised data from the Commerce Department showed today in Washington. Other reports showed consumer confidence weakened and home prices rose at a slower pace.

More jobs and cheaper gasoline are giving households the means to boost spending even further going into the all-important holiday shopping season, benefiting retailers such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) Businesses are investing in new equipment to meet that demand, even as markets cool overseas.


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