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Slew of strong US economy figures out

Monday, March 03 15:47:34

US construction spending, US manufacturing and US consumer spending all put in strong growth figures today.

U.S. consumer spending rose more than expected in January as outlays on services recorded their largest increase since late 2001, likely driven by demand for heating.

The Commerce Department said consumer spending increased 0.4 percent after advancing by a revised 0.1 percent in December. Spending was previously reported to have gained 0.4 percent in December.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, edging up 0.1 percent in January.

U.S. manufacturing growth rebounded off an eight-month low in February, helped by a recovery in new orders, an industry report showed.

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said its index of national factory activity rose to 53.2 in February, up from January's read of 51.3, which was the weakest reading since May 2013.

February's figure topped the median forecast of 52.0 in a Reuters poll of economists.

Finally, U.S. construction spending unexpectedly rose in January as an increase in private construction projects offset a drop in public outlays in a hopeful sign for growth this quarter.

Construction spending gained 0.1 percent to an annual rate of $943.1 billion, the Commerce Department said. December's construction spending growth was revised up to 1.5 percent.