From Home Furnishing Business
Retail Sales Increase Points to Strong 4Q Growth
U.S. retail sales edged up in December with a core spending gauge posting a big jump, a sign the economy gathered steam at the end of last year and was poised for stronger growth in 2014.
The Commerce Department said on Tuesday that retail sales gained 0.2 percent last month, even as receipts at automobile dealers recorded their biggest drop in more than a year.
November's sales were, however, revised to a 0.4 percent increase from 0.7 percent. Excluding autos, sales rose 0.7 percent in December, the largest increase in 10 months.
"The surge in sales in December means the momentum will continue into the first quarter of the new year. 2014 is shaping up to be pretty good from where we sit," said Chris Rupkey, chief economist at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ in New York.
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