The gross domestic product (GDP) grew at a 2.4% annual rate in the second quarter after growing at a 1.4% rate in the first quarter, the Commerce Department reported. It was the strongest showing for GDP since a 4% growth rate in the third quarter of 2002. According to a poll by Reuters, economists expected an average GDP growth of 1.5%. Most of the increase was due to a 3.3% uptick in the growth of consumer spending, which makes up more than two-thirds of the total economy. It was also helped by a 25.1% gain in federal government spending, the biggest gain since the 30.3% record in the first quarter of 1967. That growth was mostly due to a 44.1% jump in defense spending, the biggest gain since a 110% gain in the third quarter of 1951.