Statement from Commerce Secretary Locke on Retail Sales in April 2011

Washington, D.C.–(ENEWSPF)–May 12, 2011.  The Commerce Department’s U.S. Census Bureau today released retail sales data for April 2011. Retail sales rose 0.5 percent, slightly lower than private-sector expectations, though sales for February and March were revised significantly upward. Retail sales excluding motor vehicles rose 0.6 percent, consistent with private-sector expectations. Motor vehicle sales in April increased 0.2 percent, and sales at gasoline stations jumped 2.7 percent. Sales excluding those at motor vehicle and parts dealers and gasoline stations rose 0.2 percent.

“Reflecting strong job gains and tax cuts, today’s report shows consumer spending has been expanding across the board,” U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said. “However, Americans are spending an increasingly large portion of their paychecks on rising fuel costs lately – money they could be spending shopping in malls, eating in restaurants or remodeling their homes, which can help drive growth in our economy, keep America competitive and create jobs. That’s why this administration continues to support reducing our dependence on foreign oil by investing in a 21st century clean energy economy.”