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Fewer Americans to travel for July 4 holiday

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NEW YORK (CNNMoney)- Fewer Americans will be traveling over the July 4 holiday, as the shorter holiday weekend keeps more people close to home, according to estimates from motorist group AAA.

This year July 4 falls on a Thursday, giving travelers a four-day holiday weekend, rather than the five-day weekend they had last year. AAA projects that 40.8 million Americans will travel at least 50 miles from home in the July 3 to July 7 period., down about 300,000 from those who made a trip last year.

But the travel group says economic conditions are also keeping people closer to home.

“Economic growth¬†is not robust enough to offset the impact of the sequester and the effect of the end of the payroll tax cut on American families,” said AAA CEO Robert Darbelnet.

In addition to slightly fewer people hitting the road, the group estimates the average trip will fall to 613 miles, down 110 miles from last year. But travelers are expected to spend about the same amount as in 2012 – about $747.