U.S. retail sales rose at a faster-than-estimated pace last month, data indicated Tuesday, showing that consumers remain sanguine enough to maintain spending despite investor concern that the economy might be slowing.
Retail sales rose by 0.4% in June, the Commerce Department said in a statement, the four consecutive monthly gain. Economists had estimated a 0.1% gain during the month as the impact of newly-applied tariffs on China-made goods heading into the United States took hold.
Retails sales excluding motor vehicles and parts, which can swing significantly from month to month, were also up by 0.4% on the month, higher than analysts' estimates for a 0.1% increase.
The report shows that consumers remain buoyant, in a positive sign for President Donald Trump's economy.
Yet due to the topsy turvy logic of financial markets, the report might not cheer investors, since it may reduce the likelihood of Federal Reserve interest-rate cuts over the rest of this year.
Futures markets reflect a near-certainty that the Fed, led by Chair Jerome Powell, will cut interest rates by at least a quarter percentage point at their next meeting, scheduled for July 30-31.
Official U.S. interest rates are currently set in a range of 2.25% to 2.5%, already considered low by historical standards.