Retail sales in the United States fell slightly in October, according to government data published Wednesday, fueled by a large drop in consumer spending at furniture and home furnishing stores.
Sales in the world's largest economy fell by 0.1 percent in October to $705 billion, down slightly from a revised increase of 0.9 percent a month earlier, the Commerce Department said in a statement.
This was slightly better than the median expectation of economists surveyed by MarketWatch.
Spending at furniture and home furnishing stores saw the largest monthly decline in October, falling by 2.0 percent from a month earlier.
Spending also fell at motor vehicles and parts dealers and at gas stations, which have seen a sharp decline in spending over the past year.
The US economy has remained resilient this year despite concerted efforts by the US Federal Reserve to tackle high inflation through interest rate hikes.
Economic growth in the third quarter was "boosted by a surge in consumer spending," the Fed announced in its recent interest rate decision.
If retail sales continue to fall in the months ahead, that would slow down the US economy, reducing the pressure on the Fed to raise interest rates again to tackle inflation.
Also Wednesday, fresh data from the Labor Department showed that US wholesale prices fell in October by the most since April 2020, led by a sharp drop in final demand energy.
The producer price index (PPI) declined by 0.5 percent last month from September, when prices rose by a revised 0.4 percent.
This was below the median expectation of economists surveyed by MarketWatch.