United States: Retail Sales Dip in February
Retail sales were down 0.4% in February after a 3.2% jump in January and decreases of 0.8% in December and 1.1% in November. Excluding motor vehicles and gasoline, sales remained stable (0.0%) in February after rising 2.8% in January. Retail sales fell in February, but the decline appears very slight on the heels of January's sharp increase. Consumer spending is doing well and would need to slow further to reduce inflationary pressures. This should signal to the Federal Reserve that it needs to continue to tighten its monetary policy. However, the current uncertainties regarding the banking sector will make that decision more difficult.
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