China's retail sales in May climbed 15.9 percent from a year earlier, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Wednesday.
Retail sales, the major gauge of consumer spending, reached 715.8 billion yuan (US$93 billion) in May, 6.9 percent up from 667.3 billion yuan in April, said the NBS.
Retail sales in urban areas rose 16.3 percent to 486.2 billion yuan while in rural areas it jumped 15 percent to reach 229.6 billion yuan.
Wholesale and retail sector rose 15.7 percent, while catering and hotel figures were up 18.7 percent.
From January to May, retail sales expanded by 15.2 percent over the previous year.
The retail sales, an important indication of China's market move and consumers' sentiment, have been growing at an increasing speed over the past year.
(Xinhua News Agency June 13, 2007)