In the United States, consumers cut spending for a fifth successive month during November and their incomes shrank, according to a Commerce Department report that pointed to deepening recessionary pressures.
It said spending contracted by 0.6 percent after falling even more steeply by 1 percent in October. Incomes contracted by 0.2 percent after a slight 0.1 percent gain in October.
New U.S. orders for long-lasting manufactured goods fell 1 percent in November, a less severe drop than anticipated.
The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for jobless benefits jumped by 30,000 to a 26-year peak last week. Initial claims for state unemployment insurance benefits rose to a seasonally adjusted 586,000 in the week to December 20 from a revised 556,000 the prior week, the Labor Department said.
(signed) George W. Bush and the Republican Party