USA TODAY International Edition

SPENDING TICKS UP IN SURPRISE TO EXPERTS

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Americans continued to spend at a brisk pace last month in the face of rising COVID- 19 infections, though much of it was done online and not at restaurant­s or other sectors in the U. S. economy beleaguere­d by the arrival of the delta variant. Retail sales rose a seasonally adjusted 0.7% in August from the month before, the U. S. Commerce Department said Thursday. That uptick caught most economists by surprise. Consensus estimates were for a decrease of 0.85%, according to a survey of economists by FactSet.

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