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U.S. Economy: Spending Cools as Food, Fuel Prices Climb

Consumer spending cooled more than forecast in January as rising food and fuel prices caused Americans to cut back on post-holiday visits to malls and restaurants.

Purchases rose 0.2 percent, the smallest gain since June, as winter storms may have also discouraged shoppers, according to figures from the Commerce Department today in Washington. A report from Chicago-area purchasing managers showed businesses expanded in February at the fastest pace in two decades.