http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/13/consumers-optimistic_n_1204643.html?ref=unemploymentWhat's not clear is whether consumers will actually be able to afford these dreams. Unemployment is still high by any standard, and much of last season's happy holiday purchases were done on credit cards. Consumer borrowing jumped up $20.4 billion in November, the biggest monthly change in 10 years, according to data released Monday by the Federal Reserve.
In the upcoming months, it's possible that bliss will turn sour when bills start arriving.
December retail sales were also not spectacular. Overall sales were up only 0.1 percent from November, and usually-sparkling electronics and online stores were some of the lower performing categories. Many of the retailers who did see strong sales in December did so through deep discounting.
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