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Strong Retail Results, Initial Claims Steady
November retail sales exceed expectations on headline and ex-auto measures, with upward revisions to prior months improving the Q4 path, very favorable for year-end growth. Discretionary categories are broadly strong. FOMC officials will be less concerned about domestic risks heading into next week’s FOMC reading, supported by ongoing labor market improvement. Initial claims results were in line with expectations, though continuing claims experienced a massive jump in the holiday week, likely transitory.