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WASHINGTON — A day after the Federal Reserve slashed a key interest rate to battle an economic downturn, the government reported Thursday the economy did shrink in the summer, sending the strongest signal yet that a recession may have already begun.
The Commerce Department reported that the gross domestic product, the broadest measure of economic health, fell at an annual rate of 0.3 percent in the July-September period, a significant slowdown after growth of 2.8 percent in the prior quarter.