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Retail sales up in September

October 14, 2011 |  7:16 am


Here's some good news for the economy: Consumers spent more in September.

The Commerce Department said retail sales increased 1.1% last month.

A big part of the increase was auto sales, which rose 3.6%. Excluding autos, retail sales still gained 0.6%.

And retail sales were better than first thought in August. The Commerce Department revised last month's numbers up to 0.3%, after first reporting no increase.

This is all good news because it counteracts concerns that the economy is falling into a recession. Retail sales are a big part of the economy, accounting for 70% of economic activity. 

The report helped push stocks up. After the bell, the Dow rose 109 points, or 1%, to 11,587.


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