(CNBC) U.S. stocks advanced on Thursday, cutting weekly losses, but euphoria over increased retail sales in November faded as oil fell to another five-year low and renewed worries of a government shutdown.
"The consumer is absolutely feeling better. Their homes are worth more, their 401ks are worth more, and they are paying less at the gas pump; holiday spending is doing much better than I would have guessed six months ago," said Patty Edwards, managing director for investments at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.
"We've been expecting lower gas prices were going to help the consumer, and that is obviously bearing out. On the electronics side, people are buying gadgets. The other thing I've been saying is that people are staying in their homes, and spending at big-box home-improvement retailers," Edwards added.
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