WASHINGTON — Real gross domestic product — the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the U.S. — decreased at an annual rate of 0.1% in the fourth quarter of 2012, according to the advance estimate released by the Commerce Department Wednesday.

The decline in GDP was even more severe than the sluggish 1.2% increase projected by economists polled by Thomson Reuters. The GDP figure was far short of the unrevised 3.1% growth rate reported in the final third quarter reading.

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