NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- After a frenzied day of selling to start the week, markets are rebounding nicely on Tuesday. 

Examining December's retail sales figures, Cuttone & Company's Senior Vice President Keith Bliss told TheStreet's Debra Borchardt that at first glance the report didn't appear all that great. But upon further inspection the numbers are substantially higher when subtracting gasoline and automobiles.

He added that a strong retail sales number for December is important because it's a barometer for how the fourth-quarter GDP could be. Furthermore, fourth-quarter GDP is very important because it's one of the metrics the Federal Reserve will use to determine the changes in its monetary policy. 

Bliss stressed consumers will  play a vital role in 2014 because their buying is what drives 70% of the U.S. economy. Investors should pay attention to the guidance from retail companies when they report this earnings season. 

Borchardt said that "actions speak louder than words," referring to Macy's  (M) recent layoff of 2,500 workers. The move implies that M doesn't expect an overwhelmingly large crowd of shoppers in the intermediate future, she said.

-- Written by Bret Kenwell in Petoskey, Mich.

Bret Kenwell currently writes, blogs and also contributes to Robert Weinstein's Weekly Options Newsletter. Focuses on short-to-intermediate-term trading opportunities that can be exposed via options. He prefers to use debit trades on momentum setups and credit trades on support/resistance setups. He also focuses on building long-term wealth by searching for consistent, quality dividend paying companies and long-term growth companies. He considers himself the surfer, not the wave, in relation to the market and himself. He has no allegiance to either the bull side or the bear side.

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