Retail sales rose 0.4% in April after being revised up for the month of March. Those upward revisions more than offset the weaker-than-expected April total, setting us up for an even stronger rebound in consumer spending during the second quarter. Vehicle sales rose but levels remain below highs hit in late 2016.
Big-ticket spending on appliances and building materials followed a pickup in home buying over the winter. Increased confidence and spring weather helped encourage homeowners to make repairs and renovations.
Big-box discounters appeared to lose sales