Consumer Spending Remains Healthy, Inflation Still Modest
Amid falling stock prices, slowing global growth and increased political volatility at home and abroad, Region’s Bank economist Rick Moody says all indications are that US consumers are doing what they do best: spending. This year should prove to be another strong one for holiday season sales. Consumers are confident and solid growth in labor earnings provides them the wherewithal to spend even as the world surrounding them becomes noisier and more uncertain. Third quarter 2018 GDP growth was revised upward to an annualized rate of 3.7 percent from its initial estimate of 3.5 percent, with inventories and consumer spending pushing the revision higher. Core inflation remained tame as of the September print, reflecting a year-over-year rate of 1.9 percent.
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