WASHINGTON — Reports on Friday indicated weak consumer spending for the back-to-school season, although inflation seemed to be abating. The Census Bureau reported that sales at retail stores fell 0.3% in August, following a decline of 0.5% in July. Economists had been expecting an increase of 0.2% in August, according to reports. Consumer spending was expected to remain weak for the rest of the year. Wholesale prices, as measured by the Labor Department’s Producer Price Index, fell 0.9% in ...

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