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MIAMI (CBSMiami/CNN Money) — Hurricanes hitting the U.S. did not stop the economy from growing.
The U.S. economy grew at a 3% annual rate from July through September, the Commerce Department said Friday.
Economists were expecting 2.5% at best, partly because of the damage from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.
Growth from April through June was 3.1%. President Trump has promised to get it to 3% for an entire year. Economic growth has hung around 2% for years, partly because of slow wage growth and weak spending by businesses.
The economy has grown for eight straight years, one of the longest stretches in history. Unemployment is down to 4.2%, its lowest since 2001. The United States has added jobs in 83 of the past 84 months.
Still, economists expected a bigger toll from the hurricanes. Ports, schools and businesses were temporarily closed, and some employees couldn’t get to work even if their businesses stayed open.
Hurricane recovery efforts are expected to provide a boost to economic growth toward the end of the year.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. CNN contributed to this report.)