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Investing Specialists

Data Syncing Up on the Upside

Consumer, manufacturing, and business spending data remained surprisingly robust this week.

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Both economic and corporate news remained surprisingly robust this week. Personal consumption data, the key driver of GDP growth, was powerful based on positive retail sales statistics, which I have been reporting on for some time.

Strong weekly data from the International Council of Shopping Centers bolstered my confidence in a strong retailing and consumption environment for December and beyond. Year-over-year growth jumped to well over 4% on a same-store basis for the last full week of the holiday season.

While incomes didn't quite match the stellar consumption numbers, I am optimistic that income data will accelerate in the months ahead. As we move into a new year, corporate managers will be tapping expanded budgets as they strive for more growth to justify current stock prices.

Robert Johnson, CFA does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.