Key Points:

  • Retail sales, a measure of purchases at stores, restaurants and online, rose by 0.5% in March over the month.
  • Consensus among economists was a 0.6% increase.
  • March’s 0.5% increase comes after February’s revised 0.8% increase.
  • Excluding autos, retail sales rose by 1.1% over the month.
  • Spending slowed in part due to rising costs as consumer prices advanced 1.2% in March from February and 8.5% from a year earlier.
  • The Right Facts will continue to monitor retail sales.