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US retail sales fall 0.1% in Feb; underlying producer prices rise solidly

Slower consumer spending supports expectations of moderate economic growth in the first quarter

Reuters  |  Washington 

US retail sales fell for a third straight month in February as households cut back on purchases of motor vehicles and other big-ticket items, pointing to a slowdown in economic growth in the first quarter. Other data on Wednesday showed underlying producer prices increasing solidly in February amid strong gains in the cost of services such as hotel accommodation, airline fares and hospital inpatient care. Inflation is steadily rising and the Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates next week. The Commerce Department said retail sales slipped 0.1 per cent last month. ...

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First Published: Wed, March 14 2018. 19:38 IST