Retail Sales Slip on Falling Gas Prices; January's Total Revised Down
Retail sales dipped last month on tumbling gasoline prices while January's total was revised down sharply in a sign that consumption has been less robust than believed so far this year. Consumer purchases dipped 0.1 percent in February, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. Economists expected a 0.2 percent drop. Excluding volatile autos and gasoline, retail sales increased 0.3 percent, more than the 0.2 percent rise economists expected. But sales in January were revised down sharply to a 0.4 percent decline from a 0.2 percent rise, raising concerns about the recent strength of consumption.