Retail sales stagnant as inflation remains high

High prices on groceries and other everyday items have curbed retail spending.

Retail sales in the US rose by a meager 0.1 percent in May from April, according to the Commerce Department.

The pace of growth fell below economist projections, with April sales being downwardly revised to a 0.2 percent decline from unchanged.


The big picture: Sales had risen 0.6 percent in March and 0.9 percent in February, after falling 1.1 percent in January due to inclement weather.

  • The slow growth is attributed to the still-high prices of groceries and other necessities, as well as high interest rates, which have curbed consumer spending.
  • Sales at clothing and accessory stores rose 0.9 percent, while those at electronics and appliance stores posted a 0.4 percent gain. In contrast, building material and garden supplies fell 0.8percent, and gas stations saw sales decline by 2.2 percent.
  • Excluding gas prices and auto sales, retail sales rose the same amount in May.
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