General

US retail sales fall 1.1% to $677 billion in December

US retail sales fell 1.1% to $677.1 billion in December, according to advanced figures released Wednesday by the Commerce Department.

While retail sales declined more than estimates of a 0.8% decrease, they stood at $685 billion for a monthly contraction of 1% in November.

Retail sales rose 6% in December compared to the same month the previous year.

The monthly contraction in December indicates that consumer demand is falling in the world's largest economy with the Federal Reserve's aggressive monetary tightening to fight inflation.

Annual consumer inflation in the US came in at 6.5% in December, easing from 7.1% in November, according to the Labor Department.

The Fed raised its benchmark interest rate last month by 50 basis points, carrying the target range for the federal funds rate to between 4.25% and 4.5% -- its highest in 15 years.

Source: Anadolu Agency