• Retail sales increase 1.7% in October
  • Core retail sales accelerate 1.6%
  • Manufacturing production rebounds 1.2%

WASHINGTON, Nov 16 (Reuters) – U.S. retail sales surged in October as Americans eagerly started their holiday shopping early to avoid empty shelves amid shortages of some goods because of the ongoing pandemic, giving the economy a lift at the start of the fourth quarter.

The solid report from the Commerce Department on Tuesday suggested high inflation was not yet dampening spending, even as worries about the rising cost of living sent consumer sentiment tumbling to a 10-year low in early November. Rising household wealth, thanks to a strong stock market and house prices, as well as massive savings and wage gains appear to be cushioning consumers against the highest annual inflation in three decades.

“It’s more important to look at what consumers do than what they say,” said Gus Faucher, chief economist at PNC Financial in…

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