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Atlanta Fed slashes third quarter view on U.S. economic growth

A crane flies an American flag over a construction site in downtown Los Angeles, California October 29, 2014. REUTERS/Mike Blake

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. economy is on track to grow 0.9 percent in the third quarter after a bigger-than-expected widening of the trade gap for goods in August, the Atlanta Federal Reserve's GDPNow forecast model showed on Thursday.

This was a much slower rate from the regional Fed bank's prior estimate of 1.8 percent on Monday, the Atlanta Fed said on its website.

The advance August trade reading, which showed a deficit of $67.187 billion which was the largest since March, led the regional Fed's program to estimate a drag of 0.9 percentage point on U.S. growth, which was 0.7 point bigger than the previous estimate on Monday.

(Reporting by Richard Leong)