U.S. consumer spending advanced at a brisk clip in November as lower gasoline prices gave the holiday shopping season a boost, offering the latest sign of underlying momentum in the economy.
The Commerce Department said on Thursday retail sales excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services, increased 0.6 percent last month after an unrevised 0.5 percent rise in October.
The so-called core retail sales correspond most closely with the consumer spending component of gross domestic product.
Economists polled by Reuters had expected core retail sales to rise 0.4 percent last month.
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