Consumers, exports give U.S. economy muscle in the third-quarter

Tue Nov 29, 2016 5:47pm EST
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By Lucia Mutikani

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. economy grew faster than initially estimated in the third quarter, notching its best performance in two years, buoyed by strong consumer spending and a surge in soybean exports.

In a separate report, U.S. home prices rose 5.5 percent in the year to September, meaning house prices overall have now fully recovered from their plunge during the 2008 financial crisis.

A third report showed U.S. consumer confidence rebounded in November to its highest level in nine years despite uncertainty surrounding the policies of President-elect Trump.

U.S. stock prices edged higher on Tuesday after the data, with the benchmark S&P 500 index .SPX now up about 6.0 percent since the Nov. 8 elections. U.S. Treasury yields ended slightly lower on Tuesday but the benchmark ten year note US10YT=RR yield has risen about 0.5 percent in the past two weeks, helping to push the U.S. dollar up to its highest levels in more than a decade against major currencies .DXY.


U.S. gross domestic product increased at a 3.2 percent annual rate instead of the previously reported 2.9 percent pace, the Commerce Department said in its second GDP estimate on Tuesday. Economists had forecast third-quarter GDP growth being revised up to a 3.0 percent rate.

Growth was the strongest since the third quarter of 2014 and followed the second quarter's anemic 1.4 percent pace. Output was lifted by upward revisions to business investment and home building.   Continued...

A shopper walks down an aisle in a newly opened Walmart Neighborhood Market in Chicago in this September 21, 2011 file photo. REUTERS/Jim Young/Files