China's retail sales rose 15.9 percent year on year to 6.38 trillion yuan (US$851 billion) in the first nine months, despite the soaring consumer price index, the National Bureau of Statistics said Friday.
The growth rate of retail sales, a major gauge of consumer spending and an indicator of market movement, was 2.4 percentage points higher than the growth rate in the same period last year.
In September alone, retail sales expanded 17 percent year on year.
Analysts attributed the rise of retail sales to the increase of residents' disposable income as the income of both rural and urban residents rose more than 13 percent in the first nine months.
Retail sales in urban areas climbed 16.3 percent to 4.33 trillion yuan while in rural areas it increased 14.9 percent to reach 886 billion yuan.
Spending has contributed 37 percent to the GDP growth.
(Xinhua News Agency October 28, 2007)