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Aug 28, 5:11 PM EDT

Obama touts revised economic growth numbers

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- New evidence of economic growth is heartening and underscores that companies are investing and consumers are spending, President Barack Obama said Thursday.

"There are reasons to feel good about the direction we are heading," the president told reporters at the White House.

Obama said he still wanted to push Congress to take more action to move the economy along.

The government on Thursday said the U.S. economy grew at an annual rate of 4.2 percent in the April-June quarter. The figures represented a reversal from the first quarter of the year when the economy shrank at a 2.1 percent annual rate. The growth figure represented an upward revision from earlier estimates.

"Our economy actually grew at a stronger clip in the second quarter than we originally thought," Obama said during an appearance in which he also addressed the conflicts in Iraq, Syria and Ukraine.

The economic recovery has been a difficult issue for Obama because public perceptions have not matched improvements.

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