Economy Grows Slightly in 3rd Quarter

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The economy picked up slightly in the third quarter of the year, growing at a 2 percent annual rate.

That's slightly better than the 1.7 percent growth in the second quarter, but still far too slow to generate enough jobs to bring down unemployment.

The third quarter saw a boost in economic growth with 2.6 growth in spending. That was better than the second quarter's 2.2 growth rate and marked the biggest quarterly increase since a 4.1 percent gain at the end of 2006.

Economists expect the jobless rate to stay above 9 percent for months to come. The economy would need to expand by 5 percent for a whole year to decrease the jobless rate by a full percentage point.

"We're just muddling along," said Ken Mayland, president of ClearView Economics. "I think it is going to be hard to break out of this sluggish-growth rut."

The economy is expected to grown 2.6 percent for all of this year, which would be an improvement from 2009.

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