Retail sales April 2023:


A shopper browses shirts at a clothing store in Atlanta, Georgia, US, on Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2023.

Dustin Chambers | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Consumers barely kept up with inflation in April, as retail sales increased but fell short of expectations, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday.

The advanced sales report showed an increase of 0.4%, below the Dow Jones estimate for 0.8%. Excluding auto-related figures, sales increased 0.4%, which was in line with expectations.

As the numbers are not adjusted for inflation, the headline increase equaled the 0.4% monthly rise in the consumer price index. On an annual basis, sales were up just 1.6%, well below the 5% CPI pace.

A 0.8% drop in gasoline…


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