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NAM: Retail sales up In May

The AP (6/13, Crutsinger) reports that US retail spending was up 0.6% in May, according to new data out Thursday from the Department of Commerce, which “shows consumers remain resilient despite higher taxes and could drive faster growth later this year.”

US News & World Report (6/14, Kurtzleben) reports, “Even excluding auto sales, retail sales grew by 0.3 percent, a figure that is itself encouraging, says Michael Dolega, economist at TD Economics, in a commentary on Thursday’s numbers.” Dolega “adds that the strong retail figures show the recovery to be resilient, in spite of fiscal tightening in Washington.”

Bloomberg News (6/14, Jamrisko, Smialek) reports, “Eight of 13 major retail categories showed gains last month, led by the biggest increase in purchases at auto dealerships in six months.” Bloomberg News reports, “Cars and light trucks sold at a 15.2 million annualized rate in May, making it the sixth month out of the last seven to exceed the 15-million mark – a level that previously hadn’t been reached since February 2008.”

The Christian Science Monitor (6/13, Velasco) reports, “Other spending categories that saw gains included building materials (up 0.9 percent), food and beverage (up 0.7 percent), health and personal care (up 0.2 percent), sporting goods stores (up 0.6 percent), general merchandise (up 0.5 percent), nonstore retailers (up 0.7 percent), and miscellaneous retailers (up 1.2 percent).” The Monitor reports, “Consumers largely stayed away from big-ticket discretionary purchases, including electronics, furniture, and department store wares. Sales of gasoline also fell slightly, 0.2 percent.”

Also covering the story are the Wall Street Journal (6/14, Morath, Kapner, Subscription Publication), Reuters (6/14) and other media sources.

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