US GDP rise healthier than expected

US economic growth was slightly stronger than previously estimated in the third quarter, but consumer spending was weaker and more of the goods produced ended up on warehouse shelves, official figures showed.

Gross domestic product growth was revised up to an annualized rate of 2.6 per cent from 2.5 per cent, reflecting a higher than previously estimated pace of inventory accumulation, the Commerce Department said in its final estimate of third-quarter GDP.

Economists had expected GDP growth, which measures total goods and services output within US borders, to be revised up to a 2.8 per cent pace. The economy expanded at a 1.7 per cent rate in the second quarter.

Despite the less robust-than-expected reading for the third quarter, economists said they were optimistic growth was accelerating in the final months of the year.

"The more recent data suggests we're seeing reasonably healthy retail sales growth, pretty healthy investment spending, some growth in employment, so maybe the core growth or final sales growth is starting to accelerate in the fourth quarter," said Zach Pandl an economist at Nomura Securities International in New York.