U.S. consumer spending increased and inflation pushed higher in June, which could strengthen expectations that the Federal Reserve will curtail its bond purchases later this year.
The Commerce Department said on Friday consumer spending rose 0.5 percent, lifted by automobile purchases and higher gasoline prices. May’s increase was revised down to 0.2 percent from a previously reported 0.3 percent.
June’s increase in consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, was in line with economists’ expectations.
A price index for consumer spending rose 0.4 percent, the largest gain since February. It had edged up 0.1 percent in May. Over the past 12 months, inflation rose 1.3 percent, still below the Fed’s 2 percent target.
The index advanced 1.1 percent in the period through May
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