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US retail sales post biggest gain in 1-1/2 years

Published on Apr 14, 2014 9:37 PM

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - US retail sales recorded their largest gain in 1-1/2 years in March, in the latest sign the economy was emerging from its weather-induced slumber and on track to accelerate in the second quarter.

The Commerce Department said on Monday retail sales increased 1.1 per cent last month, the biggest rise since September 2012, as receipts rose in nearly all categories.

Retail sales, which account for a third of consumer spending, had risen by a revised 0.7 per cent in February.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast retail sales, advancing 0.8 per cent last month after a previously reported 0.3 per cent gain in February.

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