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Financial News Network
June 14, 2011 AT 9:55 PM
The U.S. Census Bureau estimated retail and food services sales for May at $387.1 billion today, down 0.2% from April, but up 7.7% from May of 2010. Economists had expected a drop of 0.7% for May. The increase from March 2011 to April 2011 was revised down from 0.5% increase to a 0.3% increase. Excluding slumping motor vehicle sales, which fell 2.9% from April, total retail sales rose 0.3%. Core sales, which exclude automobiles, gasoline, and building materials, increased 0.2% in May from April. For the first five months of the year, retail sales have totaled $1.87 trillion, an 8% increase over the same period in 2010. Sales at gasoline stations, up 17.5%, lead the pack, followed by sales of motor vehicles, which despite slumping in April and May due to the Japanese earthquake, are still up 13.3% so far this year.