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Economic Report: Consumer spending surges for second straight month

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Consumers sharply increased spending in the spring after an early-year lull.

The numbers: Spending on consumer goods in April rose sharply for the second straight month, pointing to a pickup in the U.S. economy in the spring.

Consumer spending jumped 0.6% after a revised 0.5% gain in March, the government said Thursday. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had predicted a 0.4% increase.

The PCE index, the Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation gauge, rose 0.2%, as did the core rate that strips out food and energy.

The rate of inflation over the past 12 months, however, was unchanged at 2%. Similarly, the core rate was flat at 1.8%.

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