Canadian retail sales advanced in May for a second month, as rising prices continued to fuel sales at gas stations.
Retail sales rose 0.2 percent in May, after a gain of 0.8 percent a month earlier, Statistics Canada reported Friday, even as car sales slumped 2 percent during the month. Excluding autos, sales were up 0.9 percent. Gasoline stations recorded a 2.3 percent gain.
Combined with strong gains in January and February, retail sales this year are up 4.9 percent, the best start to a year in six years.
Economists surveyed by Bloomberg forecast retail sales would be unchanged, and excluding autos would rise 0.3 percent.