Retail sales miss expectations, jobless claims rise
The Commerce Department said on Thursday that retail sales gained 0.3 percent. While that was below the 0.6 percent rise expected on Wall Street, April sales were revised higher to show a 0.5 percent increase, helping to keep growth forecasts intact.
Despite the rise, claims are not too far from their pre-recession lows and job growth continues at a steady clip.
Along with signs of a strong expansion in the manufacturing and services sectors, the jobs data bolstered expectations for a big snap back in growth after a dismal first quarter in which the economy contracted at a 1.0 percent annual rate.
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