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Today the U.S. Census Bureau released preliminary estimates of nationwide retail sales in May 2021 and revised estimates for April 2021. (The data include both brick-and-mortar and Internet sales.)

Despite One-Month Decline, Retail Sales Remain Elevated. Seasonally adjusted U.S. retail sales dropped by 1.3 percent from April to May. Nonetheless, sales remained well above all other months on record except March and April of this year. Though substantial by historical standards, the decline in May was modest compared to the dramatic growth in sales over the last few months. Cumulative six-month growth in sales from November 2020 to May 2021 was 14 percent.


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