Retail Sales Down 0.3 Percent in March

There were $446.9 billion of retail and food service sales in March (after adjustment for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes), down 0.3 percent from February, but up 1.7 percent from a year earlier, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Core retail sales – excluding automobiles and parts – increased 0.2 percent after remaining unchanged in the previous month. Year-over-year core sales increased 1.8 percent.

Retail trade sales fell 0.2 percent on the month, but were up 1.3 percent from a year earlier.

Sales at gasoline stations increased 0.9 percent in March, but were 15.6 percent lower than a year ago. Sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers fell 2.1 percent from February, but improved 1.4 percent from a March 2015.

Read the Census release.