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Rising gas station sales boosted retail activity in April, StatCan says

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Statistics Canada says retail sales rose 0.7 per cent to $66.8 billion in April, helped by higher sales at gasoline stations as well as food and beverage retailers.

The agency says sales were up in seven of the nine subsectors it tracks as sales at gasoline stations and fuel vendors gained 4.5 per cent.

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Sales at food and beverage retailers also gained 1.9 per cent. Sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers fell 2.2 per cent as sales at new car dealers dropped 2.9 per cent.

Core retail sales — which exclude gasoline stations and fuel vendors and motor vehicle and parts dealers — rose 1.4 per cent in April.

In volume terms, retail sales gained 0.5 per cent.

Statistics Canada says its advance estimate of retail sales points to a decline of 0.6 per cent in May, but cautioned the figure would be revised.

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