US sees subdued retail sales in August

US food and retail sales grew by a sluggish 0.2 per cent in August from a month earlier, although strong auto-sales provided a boost to the economy.

The expansion was below the 0.4 per cent forecast but was boosted by strong sales of expensive one-off items such as cars and furniture.

Earlier this year, US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke indicated the bank may reduce the amount of liquidity it pumps in to the economy if data shows signs of strengthening.

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