U.S. Economic Reports Discover Slow but Steady Progress

Economic reports released Tuesday, August 27, 2012 reflected a modest recovery, with slow but steady growth, on a national scale. The numbers showed an annual rate of growth at 1.7% within the April-June quarter.

While unemployment applicants rose slightly over the past three weeks, from 372,000 to 374,000, these numbers are lower than six weeks ago, which shows slow but steady progress in the economy. Furthermore, employers added 163,000 jobs in July, an improvement from the average 73,000 created monthly since May.

Even with slow growth, the resilient American attitude has led to the fastest spending pace in five months, according to reports released by the Commerce Department. After a decline in consumer spending in May, and a flat line in June, July spending was up again, by .4% in July.

In exchange, U.S. retailers reported strong sales gains for August. It was reported that consumer spending, which accounts for 70% of US economic activity, resulted in retailers such as Target, Costco, Limited Brands and Macys experiencing higher-than expected sales.

Meanwhile, world stock markets drifted. Germany’s DAX closed down 1.6%, at 6,895. The FTSE index of Britain, fell .4% to 5,719. The Shanghai Composite Index dropped to a three-year low, losing .03% and resting at 3,052.58.

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