Yahoo! News – March Retail Sales Log Unexpectedly Big Rise: “The Commerce Department said retail sales rose an unexpectedly sharp 1.8 percent in March, the biggest gain since March 2003. Excluding cars and trucks, sales gained 1.7 percent, that category’s best performance since March 2000.

Wall Street analysts had expected both figures to advance a smaller 0.6 percent.

February sales were also revised upward, to a 1.0 percent increase from the previously reported 0.7 percent gain. February ex-auto sales were raised to a 0.6 percent advance from a previously reported flat reading. “

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