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2014 End of year Retail Market Report

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The good news is the U.S. economy appears to be growing again. The Washington Post reports that GDP is the best in a decade. For the three months ending in September the economy experienced a five (5 percent) percent annualized growth. This is combined with robust consumer spending, low levels of personal debt, plunging oil prices which translate into more money in the American pocketbook, a strong stock market, and lower unemployment measuring 5.8 percent. Consumer spending is by far the driving force in this recovery by sending sales of cars and household appliances up. The only sectors slow to recover are the housing industry which continues to drag behind other indicators and wages.

The stock market’s stunning return has hastened a comeback as the Dow Jones Industrial average inched above a record breaking 18,000.This might well be the push needed to encourage side liners with capital to invest to jump into the markets in one way or another.

Even the U.S. Government is doing its part to hasten a recovery by increasing its own spending which was up 9.9 percent. This is an important factor in the Washington Metropolitan area where a great number of service and consulting businesses rely heavily on the federal agencies to keep ordering goods and awarding contracts in the region.