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PNC ECONOMIST: BETTER CONSUMER SPENDING IS DRIVING A WELCOME ECONOMIC GROWTH SPURT

 PITTSBURGH, Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The Department of Commerce announced the October retail sales figures today.
 According to Stuart Hoffman, PNC Bank Corp.'s (NYSE: PNC) chief economist:
 -- Consumers are back in the driver's seat when it comes to economic growth. Retail spending surged by 1.5 percent in October, led by a jump in sales of cars and light trucks.
 -- Consumers' attitudes about the economy have edged up in recent months, while spending has raced ahead. October's big retail sales gain was the seventh consecutive monthly rise, which bodes well for a decent upcoming holiday sales season.
 -- Led by consumers' spending muscle, the economy will end this year with a welcome growth spurt.
 -- Signs of economic strength coupled with an up-tick in inflation are driving up mortgage rates. The 30-year fixed rate should move back up near 7.25 percent, but a more severe jump in mortgage rates is not expected.
 /delval/
 -0- 11/12/93
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: To arrange an interview with Hoffman, call 412-456-3584./
 /CONTACT: Cindy Jergan of Ketchum Public Relations, 412-456-3584, for PNC/
 (PNC)


CO: PNC Bank Corp. ST: Pennsylvania IN: FIN SU: ECO

CD -- PG003 -- 3546 11/12/93 09:29 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 12, 1993
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