The U.S. economy grew at a solid pace in the final three months of 2011 but that growth likely slowed in the first three months of this year as businesses cut back on restocking their shelves, The Associated Press reported.
The Commerce Department says the economy grew at an annual rate of 3 percent in the October-December quarter, the fastest pace since the spring of 2010. The government’s third and final look at fourth quarter growth was unchanged from the previous estimate. Slower growth in exports than previously estimated was offset by stronger growth in business investment.
Economists believe that growth slowed to around 1.5 percent in the current quarter. For the year, economists at JPMorgan believe the economy will grow 2.2 percent, slightly better than last year’s 1.7 percent growth.