Wednesday Jun 13, 201206:21 PM GMT
US retail sales fall for second consecutive month
Wed Jun 13, 2012 6:20PM
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U.S. consumers, constrained by weak job creation and paltry wage increases, pulled back on shopping in May, sending retail sales lower for a second straight month.


The Commerce Department says retail sales dipped 0.2 percent in May. That followed a revised 0.2 percent decline April. The back-to-back declines were the first in two years.


The flat spending suggests slow job growth and paltry wage increases may be leading consumers to pull back on spending.


Economists worry that consumer spending may further weaken if hiring and pay doesn’t pick up. Consumer spending makes up 70 percent of economic activity in the United States. The Globe and Mail




U.S. job growth has slowed since the start of the year. Employers added 226,000 jobs on average during the first three months of the year; they have added an average of 73,000 jobs a month since April. FT


In the January-March quarter, overall economic growth slowed to an annual rate of 1.9 per cent, down from a 3 per cent rate of increase in the October-December period. AP


Americans' confidence in the economy declined slightly last week, on the heels of a disappointing jobs report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Gallup


Almost one in seven Americans are living below the poverty line, with an alarming number of children, nearly one in five, living in poverty, according to statistics presented at a U.S. Senate committee hearing last week.



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