Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Retail sales fell for a second straight month in April, a disappointing performance that raised doubts about whether consumers were regaining their desire to shop. A rebound in consumer demand is a necessary ingredient for ending the recession.
The Commerce Department says retail sales fell 0.4% last month, much worse than the flat reading economists expected. The April weakness followed a 1.3% drop in March that was worse than first estimated.
Retail sales had posted gains in January and February after falling for six straight months, raising hopes that the all-important consumer sector of the economy might be stabilizing.