By  on February 14, 2019

An extremely weak and puzzling holiday spending picture emerged Thursday, leading some economists to question the validity of the government’s official retail sales data.

Dashing hopes that spending was strong during the vital holiday season, which makes up the lion’s share of retailers’ profits, official figures showed retail sales across stores, restaurants and online slumped 1.2 percent in December. (The figures are adjusted for seasonal variations and mark the change compared with November sales).

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