The nation's economy grew at a 2.7% annual rate in the third quarter,faster than originally estimated, because of greater strength inexports and a surge in housing-related investment, the governmentreported.

The report is revised from the government's initialestimate of 2.0% growth, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported. Inthe second quarter, GDP grew at a 1.3% rate.

The change in gross domestic product came in slightly lower than the 2.8% annual rate economists had predicted.

The boost from the initial estimate published last month suggests thatthe housing recovery is taking root, and the European financial crisisis having less impact on exports than initially feared. But consumersare spending less than the government first estimated, as third-quartergrowth in consumer spending was revised down to 1.4% from an initialestimate of 2%.

Housing investment climbed at an annual pace of14.2%, the Bureau of Economic Analysis said. The gain was thesecond-biggest quarterly jump in spending for new homes and remodelingsince before the housing bust.

Exports of goods and services grew1.1% in the third quarter. The government previously estimated they fell1.6%. In the second quarter, they grew 5.3%.