Retail sales rises for sixth straight month

December 13, 2011 - 8:40 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans spent more on autos, furniture and clothing during the start of the holiday shopping season, boosting retail sales for the sixth straight month.

The Commerce Department says retail sales rose 0.2 percent in November. The modest gain was lower than October's, which was revised higher to show a 0.6 percent increase.

Sales rose at electronics and appliance stores, auto dealers, clothing stores and department stores. But sales fell at building materials stores, gas stations, and grocery stores.

Consumer spending has rebounded since the summer. That drove economic growth higher in the July-September period.