US economy shrinks

US - The US economy has shrunk for the first time in eight years, official figures have revealed.

US economic output, or GDP, fell by 0.4% in the three months from July to September, the Commerce Department said.

The Commerce Department statistics are being viewed as the first official indication that recession is on the way for the world's largest economy.

Recession is commonly defined as two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth.

Better than expected

The fall in US growth, from a rate