The Unsinkable Consumer

Worries about inflation and rising rates haven't curbed the boom

The experts say the great American spending spree is winding down. With interest rates rising, the jobless rate up, and the Federal Reserve determined to slow growth, the handwriting seems to be on the wall. "The pie is going to quit growing," asserts David D. Glass, a director and recently retired CEO of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Wall Street is so nervous that when Circuit City Group issued a mild profit warning on June 6, its stock fell 25%.

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