US retail sales fell for the second month in a row in June, according to the latest Commerce Department figures, although sales at clothing stores bucked this trend to post a small rise.
According to the data, total sales slipped 0.5% below May, when adjusted for seasonal variations but not for price changes. But they were 4.8% above June last year.
Sales at the nation’s clothing stores rose 0.6%, while sales at general merchandise stores rose 0.2%, including a 1.1% increase at department stores.
The figures are seen as providing further evidence that the economy has slowed, and support June same-store sales reports from retailers earlier this month.