NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Weak consumer spending and sentiment threw cold water on markets Friday, though the S&P held tentative gains, while the Dow tried, but failed, to follow.
As the machine that powers 70% of the U.S. economy, consumer spending is closely watched by investors. Spending fell in April for the first time in a year after March's pop, while personal income gains were modest. Rounding out the trifecta, consumer sentiment was worse than expected.
Yep, we were happy to let poor Q1 GDP slide Thursday, but data suggesting we won't get a big bounce in Q2 is a worry. That's a big part of what we're rallying on: "the economy, stupid."
--- By Jane Searle in New York
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