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U.S. economy grows 2.6% in fourth quarter, GDP shows

The U.S. expanded at a 2.6% annual pace in fourth quarter, extending one of the best stretches of growth during the current eight-and-a-half-year-old upturn. GDP fell short of MarketWatch's 3% forecast, however, owing to lower inventory production and a bigger trade deficit. Consumer spending, the main engine of the economy, rose a strong 3.8%, the biggest increase in almost two years. Investment in new housing increased 11.6%, business spending on equipment surged 11.4% and outlays on structures edged up 1.4%, according to Commerce Department data. Yet the value of inventories declined by $29.3 billion. Trade was an even bigger drag on GDP. Imports jumped 13.9%, doubling the 6.9% rise in exports. Inflation as measured by the PCE price index increased at a 2.8% annual rate, the highest pace since 2011. Core PCE rose at a slower 1.9% clip, however.

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Americans for Fair Taxation® is a 501(c)(4) non-profit, non-partisan grassroots organization solely dedicated to replacing the current income tax system with a fair, simple and transparent national consumption tax – the FAIRtax® Plan. We rely entirely on contributions from concerned citizens like you who want a tax system that will generate jobs and stimulate the economy. Welcome to the FAIRtax team!

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