In this Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2012, photo, shoppers carry their purchases at a Target in Chicago. Americans kept spending in August despite their escalating fears about the slow economic

 

              In this Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2012, photo, shoppers carry their purchases at a Target in Chicago. Americans kept spending in August despite their escalating fears about the slow economic
In this Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2012, photo, shoppers carry their purchases at a Target in Chicago. Americans kept spending in August despite their escalating fears about the slow economic recovery and surging gas prices. A range of retailers from discounter Target to club-operator Costco on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012, reported August sales that beat Wall Street estimates. The results seem to show that what Americans do and say are two different things: The strong sales reports come a day after a private research firm said consumer confidence in August fell to its lowest level since November 2011. (AP Photo/Sitthixay Ditthavong)