Retail sales in the United States unexpectedly rose by 1 percent in January after a record drop for sixth consecutive months, the Commerce Department reported on Thursday.
The 1 percent increase, which followed a decrease of 3 percent in December, was much better than a 0.8 percent decline that analysts had expected.
Auto sales increased by 1.6 percent in January, while retail sales excluding autos were up 0.9 percent.
However, on a year-over-year basis, retail sales in January fell 9.7 percent from the same month in 2008 due to the economic crisis.
(Xinhua News Agency February 13, 2009)