Retail sales fall more than expected

Retail sales fall more than expected

Retail sales fell 0.2 percent from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted 473.5 billion US dollars in June, following a revised 0.1 percent decline in May, the Commerce Department said.

The continued drop in sales surprised economists, who had expected sales to inch up by 0.1 percent compared to the 0.3 percent decrease originally reported for the previous month.

- Sales fell in six of 13 major retail categories in June.

Core retail sales - excluding automobiles and parts - also fell 0.2%. Receipts weakened at department store, sporting goods outlets and restaurants.

The data suggest that consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the U.S. economy, made a weaker contribution to growth in the first half of 2017.

The Commerce Department said retail sales fell by 0.2 percent in June after edging down by a revised 0.1 percent in May.

The Commerce data don't reflect changes in prices, and consumers enjoyed lower gasoline costs in June, which households may have opted to save rather than spend elsewhere.

Non-storeRetailers were up 9.2% (±1.8 percent) from June 2016, while Sporting Goods, Hobby, Book, & Music Stores were down 8.9% (±2.1 percent) from past year.

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