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Retail sales miss expectations in December

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Retail sales miss expectations in December

“Core” retail sales fall.

Retail sales surprisingly decreased 0.9% last month, according to data released by the Commerce Department Wednesday. This follows a 0.4% revised increase in November.

Sales excluding autos, gasoline, building materials and food services, so-called “core retail sales,” fell 0.4% in December, after posting a 0.6% increase in November.

Analysts had expected a 0.4% increase in core retail sales.

The results, although surprising to the downside, are generally not expected to dampen the view that the economy continues to improve, although the poor December showing and the downward revision to November’s results suggest a slightly lower Q4 GDP than previously expected.

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