higher gas prices

Stocks Fall as Consumer Spending Fails to Impress

Stocks gave ground Thursday as investors were underwhelmed by news of higher consumer spending. By late morning, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 92 points to 13,015. The Standard & Poor's 500 fell 10 to 1,400. The Nasdaq slipped 28 to 3,053.

US Retail Sales Rose 1.1% in February

Americans stepped up spending on retail goods in February, evidence that a stronger job market is boosting the economy. Consumers bought more autos, clothes and appliances. They also paid higher prices for gas. Retail sales increased 1.1 percent last month, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. It was the biggest gain since September.