US retailers reported strong sales in October, a sign American consumers are spending with more gusto which could help keep the economy growing at a brisk pace.
Other data published yesterday day showed consumer sentiment rising to a seven-year high this month, also positive for the spending outlook as the country nears its traditional period of frenzied holiday shopping.
Retail sales, which account for about one-third of consumer spending, rose 0.3pc in October. The gain was larger than analysts expected, and would have been higher but for a 1.5pc drop in receipts at petrol retailers. "(The) numbers bode well for the crucial holiday shopping season," said economist Paul Diggle. Americans turn their shopping into overdrive in late November.