Entries in September (3)


September Retail Sales Post 5.4-Percent Rise

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Adding to the mix of improving economic news is the retail sales report from the Commerce Department Monday.

Sales in September were better than expected -- up 1.1 percent from the previous month and 5.4 percent above September 2011. This is the third straight month of improving retail sales.

Consumer spending drives about two-thirds of the U.S. economy.

According to economist Diane Swonk, improving home prices are playing a part in Monday’s report, which she says has been “one of the largest positive moves for consumers over last six months.”

The report shows big increases in electronics and appliances; Apple’s iPhone 5 helped boost this sector.

Retail sales outside of autos, gasoline and building materials -- known as core retail sales -- rose 0.9 percent last month.

As with all the positive economic news these days, there are some caveats.  Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, points out that “consumers are likely dipping into savings to pay for the increased spending -- we need more jobs to sustain this spending.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


103,000 New Jobs Added in September; Unemployment Still Stuck at 9.1%

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- After falling flat the month before, the number of jobs added in the U.S. rose in September, sending U.S. stock futures up ahead of Friday's opening bell.

The Department of Labor reported Friday that 103,000 jobs were added last month, better than the approximately 60,000 most economists had expected.  That's up from August, when the department originally reported zero jobs were added to employers' payrolls -- a first since 1945.  The number has since been revised to 57,000.

Still, the latest figure wasn't enough to change the unemployment rate, which has been holding steady at 9.1 percent for the past three months.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Retail Sales Better than Expected in September

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Retail sales rose a higher-than-expected 0.6 percent in September, according to numbers released by the U.S. Commerce Department on Friday, the third such consecutive gain.

“This rising trend signals that consumer spending is expanding and that the recovery is broadening,” U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said.

Consumers spent more on electronics and appliances, the report said. Car sales increased 1.6 percent.

“The outlook for sustained growth remains positive,” Locke said, “and this administration remains focused on continuing the economic turnaround that has now seen four straight quarters of GDP growth and nine straight months in which the private sector has added jobs.”

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio