Published: Apr 30, 2010 10:16 AM EDT

       WASHINGTON (AP) - The government says the economy grew at a
solid 3.2 percent pace during the first quarter of this year as
consumers boosted their spending by the most in three years.
      Friday's report provides more evidence that the recovery remains
on track. It marked the third straight quarterly gain as the United
States heals from the longest and deepest recession since the
1930s. But that's weaker than the fourth quarter of last year, when
the economy grew at 5.6 percent.
      Consumers increased their spending this quarter at a 3.6 percent
pace, the strongest showing since early 2007. That marked a big
improvement from the fourth quarter when consumer spending grew at
just a 1.6 percent pace.