The third government estimate of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product in the Third Quarter was lowered to an annual rate of 2.2 percent on Tuesday from an initial 3.5 percent growth estimate on October 29.

Today’s GDP estimate is based on more complete source data than were available for the second estimate issued on November 24, the Department of Commerce said today.

The Real gross domestic product is the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States.

The primary contributors to third quarter growth were personal consumption expenditures, exports, private inventory investment, federal government spending and residential fixed investment, the Department said.

These were partly offset by a decline in nonresidential fixed investment. U.S. imports, also counted as a negative contribution, also grew during the quarter.

The economy contracted by 0.7 percent in the second quarter of 2009.