Consumers

Consumers are picking up the lagging business sector's slack

Reproduced from LPL Research; Note: "Other components" includes housing, inventories, trade and government spending; Chart: Axios Visuals

The narrative of the U.S. economy lately has been strong consumer spending as the cornerstone of growth, offsetting lackluster business investment.

Driving the news: Economists pared down estimates for Q4 GDP — prompted by worse-than-expected economic data on Friday. The downgrades would have been worse, if not for retail sales figures that pointed to a solid, but slightly more cautious, consumer.

Enthusiasm may be moving into housing

Open house sign.
Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The positive sentiment in the stock market looks to have also gotten into real estate buyers.

What's happening: Mortgage applications and refinances jumped for the week ending Nov. 8, even as mortgage rates rose and increased the total asking price for homes, data from the Mortgage Bankers Association shows.