Washington - Retail sales for the electronics and appliance channel rose 1.7 percent in April to $8.4 billion, the U.S. Commerce Department reported.
Sales were essentially flat from the previous month, edging up just 0.2 percent, the agency said today.
In contrast, April sales at furniture and home furnishing stores increased 7.6 year over year, and total retail sales excluding food and auto rose 6.1 percent, seasonally adjusted.
The National Retail Federation (NRF), an industry trade group, said the softness in month-over-month sales reflects a seasonal shift in consumer spending that's typical for this time of the year. Added NRF chief economist Jack Kleinhenz: "With Easter a full twenty days earlier this year and unseasonably warm weather, consumers started spending as early as February and March on everything from spring apparel to newly-released electronic items."
Among retailers reporting monthly results, Target previously posted a 2.1 percent increase in April sales to $5 billion and a 1 percent in comparable store sales, while Costco's net sales rose 7 percent to $7.3 billion and U.S. comps increased 4 percent.