The U. S. Commerce Department said on Friday that retail sales dropped to $362.5 billion in May, 1.2 percent lower than April.
A rise of 0.1 percent was predicted by economists for the month. In April, retail sales rose 0.6 percent.
Despite a prediction that sales would rise 0.2 percent without vehicle sales being taken into account, retail dropped 1.1 percent in May, excluding automobile sales.
It was further noted by the report that compared to a year ago in May, sales rose 6.9 percent. For a three-month stretch, March through May, sales were up 8.1 percent from the same three months a year ago.
Gasoline station sales for the month rose 20.2 percent from a year ago. Non-store retail sales rose 15.6 percent from May 2008, while retail trade sales were up 7.4 percent from a year earlier. (With Inputs from Agencies)
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