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The U.S. Commerce Department released the retail sales data on Thursday. The U.S. retail sales jumped 1.2% in May, exceeding expectations for a 1.1% increase, after a 0.2% gain in April. April's figure was revised up from a flat reading.
The increase was driven by higher automobiles and gasoline purchases. Automobiles sales increased 2.0% in May, while gasoline station sales climbed 3.7%.
Retail sales excluding automobiles increased 1.0% in May, beating forecasts for a 0.7% rise, after a 0.1% gain in April.
Sales at clothing retailers climbed 1.5%. Sales at building material and garden equipment stores were up 2.1% and sales at restaurants and bars increased 0.1%.
Sales at electronics and appliance outlets were up 0.1% in May, whiles sales at online stores gained 1.4%.
These figures indicate that U.S. economy was finding momentum after a slow start of the second quarter.
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