Retail sales in March rose 0.2 percent month-over-month, buoyed by strong sales at gas stations. But building materials and other related markets saw a drop in sales last month.
According to the Commerce Department report, sales of building materials fell 1.6 percent, and sales of home furnishings fell 0.3 percent. General retail stores, like Wal-Mart and Target, saw a combined 0.6 decline in March.
But year-over-year, overall retail sales increased 2 percent, again buoyed by higher gas prices. Building materials and home furnishings took the biggest hit when compared with last year, falling 6.9 percent and 7.1 percent respectively.