U.S. Economy

     (CN) – Consumer spending across the U.S. surged to its highest level in six years, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday.
     Leading the charge were purchases of autos and other durable goods.
     The government says consumer spending rose 1 percent last month after being essentially flat in March. The figure was the biggest one-month climb since a 1.3 percent increase in August 2009.
     Federal economists said the surge was led by a 2.3 percent gain in spending on durable goods such as autos.
     Spending on nondurable goods, such as clothing and food, rose by 1.4 percent, while spending on services such as rent payments and utility bills increased 0.6 percent.
     The department also noted that incomes rose 0.4 percent, and the wages and salaries, a subset of that number, gained 0.5 percent.

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