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August’s conflicting U.S. economic data appeared to affirm Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s view that the economic outlook looks “unusually uncertain.” The second quarter’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was revised down to +1.6%, from an initial estimate of +2.4%. The revision is a significant decline from the annual rate of +3.7% in the first quarter and +5% in the last three months of 2009. Additionally, investors faced disappointing news on the housing front: existing home sales plunged 27.2% in July, according to the National Association of Realtors. Further, home inventories reached a 12.5-month supply, versus an 8.9-month supply in June.
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