US economy grew 3.3% over the past year, ending recession fears and sending S&P and Dow higher

The US economy grew much faster than expected in the last three months of last year, beating expectations.

America missed the transition to recession – which many analysts predicted was inevitable.

Gross domestic product (GDP), a measure of all manufactured goods and services, rose 3.3 percent year-on-year from October to December, the Commerce Department said Thursday.

The Wall Street consensus was for fourth-quarter growth of just 2 percent.

It was a slightly slower pace than the 4.9 percent in the July-September third quarter, thanks to a pick-up in consumer spending.

Wall Street’s major indexes were poised for a higher open as strong economic growth raised hopes for the likelihood of a rare «soft landing» — when inflation falls without a recession or a big rise in unemployment.

The latest numbers reflect the surprising resilience of the US economy – and the US consumer’s willingness to spend despite high interest rates and price levels.

This is the sixth quarter in a row that GDP grew at an annual rate of 2 percent or more.

This is the latest news. Update to follow.


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