Washington, DC, Oct. 26, 2012 -- The U.S.economy continued to expand in the third quarter, rising at an annual rate of 2%, the Commerce Department said.
Economists had expected a rate of 1.8% for the period.
GDP rose at a 1.3% rate in the second quarter.
Consumer purchases, the biggest part of the economy, grew at a 2% annual rate, up from a 1.5% second-quarter gain.
An improving housing market helped boost residential fixed investment by 14.4%.