WASHINGTON DC: The US Federal Reserve appears to have been vindicated in its view that cooling house prices have not damaged the rest of the nation's economy.

Latest data shows November retail sales gained one percent last month, notching their largest rise since July.

Comments economist Richard DeKaser: "The holiday sales season has started in very good form. This could mean consumer spending growth of 3% or better, and GDP growth could be closer to 2.5%."

The numbers could also challenge the widely held view that US economic growth will slow again in the final quarter of 2006, after a slowdown in Q3 to 2.2%.

Data sourced from reuters.com; additional content by WARC staff