American consumers increased retail spending in Feb. but at a slower rate than the previous month, as they struggled with surging gasoline prices related to the Ukraine war.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau.
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Retail sales increased by a seasonally adjusted 0.3% in February compared with January. That figure was a slower rate from January’s revised 4.9% monthly surge.
Sales of autos and auto parts rose by 0.8% and sales at gasoline stations increased by 5.3%.
The recent surge in prices, led by gasoline prices held back consumer spending. Gasoline prices rose by 38% over the year.
February posted a slowdown in auto sales. US consumers bought cars and trucks at an annualized rate of 14.5 million in February, lower than 15.5 million in January.