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U.S. Recovery Gaining Momentum
The recovery of the U.S. economy appears to be quickening, driven by manufacturing gains and renewed consumer spending.
Consumers increased their spending in March for the sixth consecutive month, and by the greatest amount during the period, reported the U.S. Commerce Department Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Personal consumption rose 0.6%, following a 0.5% increase in February. Both personal income and disposable personal income rose 0.3% in March. The consumer savings rate fell to 2.7% from 3% in February, a sign of growing consumer confidence.
The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index increased last month following an increase in March. The index now stands at 57.9, up from 52.3 a month earlier. The consumers’ view of both present conditions and future expectations improved.
"The index is not at its highest reading in about a hear and a half," said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center. "Looking ahead, continued job growth will be key in sustaining positive momentum," she added.
In manufacturing, factory orders rose in March beyond the expectations of analysts, reported bloomberg.com. New orders for manufactured goods increase $5 billion in March or 1.3%, reported the U.S. Census Bureau.
New orders have increased in eleven of the last twelve months. Shipments increased 2.2%, following a 0.4% increase in February.
Read the Census Bureau news release.
Read The Conference Board news release.
Read the Bureau of Economic Analysis news release.