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US Economic Growth Slower Than First Thought

People are seen walking through Roosevelt Field shopping mall in Garden City, New York, Feb. 22, 2015.

U.S. economic growth was slower than first thought in the last few months of 2014.

Friday's report from the Commerce Department says the gross domestic product expanded at a 2.2 percent annual rate in the fourth quarter.

That is a bit slower than a previous estimate, and half the rate of the third quarter's expansion.

Commerce officials say GDP growth slowed because of less federal government spending and rising imports.

For all of 2014 the new analysis puts growth at 2.4 percent, which is a bit faster than the prior year.

White House economic advisor Jason Furman said the slower growth rate is due to temporary issues, and that the labor market and energy security continue to improve.

Economists from PNC bank say the weaker growth figures are due in part to a strong U.S. dollar and weak overseas demand which hurt U.S. exports.