(Filed Under Financial and General Interest News). Despite the record-breaking snowstorm that hit the northeast on December 26, U.S. retail and food service sales during the month rose 7.9 percent over December 2009, the U.S. Census Bureau announced Friday.
Retail trade sales were up 8.2 percent over last year, and 0.5 percent from November, representing the sixth consecutive month of growth. For the full fiscal year, retail sales rose 6.6 percent and 5.9 percent excluding automobiles.
Gary Locke, the U.S commerce secretary, described these sales as a sign that the country is edging toward economic recovery. “As we reflect on the past year, today’s data underscore that retail sales—a fundamental indicator of economic health—grew at a strong pace throughout the second half of 2010, signaling momentum in consumer spending and the overall economy,” he said in a statement. “Our mission in 2011 is accelerated hiring for the American people and accelerated growth for the U.S. economy.”
Although retail sales have been up over 2009, this has not translated into more jobs. Earlier this month, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the unemployment was 9.4 percent in December, only a 0.4 percent improvement from the previous month.
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