Retail sales rose more than expected in October, according to a Department of Commerce report Tuesday.
Sales rose 0.8% month-on-month, topping the forecast for a 0.6% rise.
This increase was led by higher spending on gas and at online retailers like Amazon. Furniture stores, brick-and-mortar department stores, restaurants, and bars were the only places where declines from September were recorded.
Excluding auto and gas sales which tend to be volatile, so-called core retail sales rose 0.6% (0.3% expected.) Excluding autos, sales jumped 0.8%.
This monthly report provides a pulse reading on consumer spending, which is the most important driver of US economic growth. The gains for September were revised higher.
“A strong reading for October retail sales would position the consumer for a strong 2016 holiday shopping season, which would be beneficial for fourth quarter consumer discretionary sector corporate earnings growth,” said S&P Global Market Intelligence strategists in a note on Monday.