Retail sales were flat after a brisk March last month, the Department of Commerce said Friday as Americans resumed their final round of government economic reviews.
The April number was a slowdown from the previous month, as retail sales rose 10.7 percent as vaccinations increased and people outside their homes became more comfortable and spent more money on clothing, restaurants, bars and sporting goods. Retail sales, which saw a record decline at the start of the pandemic just over a year ago, have been closely watched as monthly measures of the health of the economy and consumer attitudes.
Morgan Stanley economists had expected retail sales to grow smaller in April compared to March, based on the distribution of stimulus checks. Around 83 percent of this last round was distributed in the second half of March.
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