Rise in Retail Sales Brightens Recovery Picture
Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast retail sales increasing 0.3% last month. Compared to January last year, sales were up 4.7% (see chart above).
"It's a nice surprise for the economy, it suggests that the consumer is willing to spend a little. It tells us that retail sales are in a clear recovery," said Kathleen Stephansen, chief economist at Aladdin Capital Holdings in Stamford, Connecticut.