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The U.S. economy's tepid performance last quarter – a 2.2 percent annual growth rate, the government said Friday – was typical of the economic rebound that began in the summer of 2009 .Consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of economic activity, grew at a 4.4 percent rate in the fourth quarter – the strongest performance in eight years and even better than the 4.2 percent estimated a month ago.Growth rebounded to a 4.6 percent rate in the spring and a 5 percent rate in the third quarter in the strongest performance in 11 years.Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at IHS Global Economics, thinks that growth will rebound to a solid 3.4 percent rate in the April-June quarter and remain robust for the rest of the year.He believes that the job growth seen over the past year, the strongest in 17 years, will energize consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of the economy.
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