Gross domestic product increased at a 5.6% annual rate in the fourth quarter of 2009, revised down from 5.9% previous estimate, as business investments and private inventories were revised lower, the Commerce Department reported Friday.

Consumer spending slipped to 1.6% annual growth in the fourth quarter from the 1.7% previously reported.

Overall, fourth-quarter growth was tempered by downward revisions to nonresidential fixed investment based on November and December construction spending data.

Economists polled by Thomson Reuters expected GDP to be unchanged at 5.9% growth in this final revision, according to the median estimate.

Personal consumption expenditures, excluding food and energy purchases, increased 1.8% annually in the fourth quarter. Economists had expected core PCE to increase 1.6%, according to the median estimate.

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