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U.S. Q1 GDP revised down to 1.9% annual rate

U.S. Q1 GDP revised down to 1.9% annual rate (by Greg Robb)

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The U.S. economy expanded at a 1.9% annual rate in the first quarter, slower than the 2.2% gain estimated a month ago, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. The revisions to real gross domestic product were largely due to lower inventory building and trade. Economists were predicting a revision to about 1.8% rate. The economy expanded at a 3.0% rate in the fourth quarter. Consumer spending rose 2.7% in the first quarter, down from the prior estimate of a 2.9% gain. A key measure of inflation, the personal consumption expenditure price index, rose a revised 2.5%, compared with the initial estimate of a 2.4% gain. Corporate profits before-tax rose 13.2% in the quarter, up from a 0.4% decline in the fourth quarter. Over the past year, corporate profits were up 14.9%.