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Weak U.S. Retail Sales, Sentiment Show Economy Lost Traction

  • Sales decline of 1.9% in December, worse than projected
  • Consumer sentiment sours in January on inflation concerns
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U.S. Retail Sales Slide 1.9% in December

U.S. retail sales stumbled at the end of 2021, factory output weakened and consumer sentiment deteriorated at the start of the new year, illustrating a loss of traction for the economy that many analysts view as temporary.

Friday’s data deluge showed how lingering shipping challenges, supply and labor constraints, the fastest inflation in decades and the omicron variant are weighing on activity.