Data continue to point to a tepid economic recovery for the US rather than a dip into a second recession. The latest clue: Incomes were up for Americans in August, but only 0.5 percent.
Unemployment rate watchers noted that summer is traditionally a slow season for hiring, but the economy continues to show signs of slow progress. The unemployment rate stayed at 9.5 percent in a jobs report issued Friday.
Consumer spending increased 1.3 percent in August, but a key reason was the 'cash for clunkers' program. Also, initial claims for unemployment rose last week, but the four-week average for claims fell slightly.
Some 4.4 million jobs have disappeared since the recession began in 2007.