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By Lucia Mutikani WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. economic growth braked more sharply than initially thought in the fourth quarter as businesses slowed their pace of stock accumulation and the trade deficit widened, but the underlying fundamentals remained solid. Gross domestic product expanded at a 2.2 percent annual pace, revised down from the 2.6 percent pace estimated last month, the Commerce Department said on Friday. With consumer spending accelerating at its quickest pace since the first quarter of 2006 and sturdy gains in other measures of domestic demand, the slowdown in growth is likely to be temporary. "There is every reason to believe that domestic demand will grow at a rapid clip over the first half of this year too," said Paul Ashworth, chief U.S. economist at Capital Economics in Toronto.