Americans' confidence in the economy improved slightly in August, but the mood is still gloomy amid job worries, according to a monthly survey.
Americans spent last month at the fastest pace in four months, helped by a jump in demand for automobiles.
As Labor Day approaches, many of us are contemplating the end of summer, pre-season football and squeezing in the last bit of vacation. There are others, however, who are gearing up for back to school.
Sales of new homes dropped sharply last month to the slowest pace on record, the latest sign that the economic recovery is fading.
Overall orders for big-ticket manufactured goods increased 0.3 percent in July, the Commerce Department said Wednesday, but that was only because of a 76 percent jump in demand for commercial aircraft.
The nation's highest income groups predictably did better during the recession and socked away their money, new government figures show, but wealthier Americans' newfound penchant for savings is already driving Democratic calls to raise taxes on them this fall.
New home construction edged up slightly in July, but applications for building permits tumbled to the lowest point in 14 months, a sign of continued stress in housing.
Americans spent less at most retail stores in July and inflation remained tame as high unemployment and weak job growth fueled fears of a slowing economic recovery.
What a difference a week or so makes. July was a pretty good month for stocks and capped off a strong rally that began in mid-May.