By  on June 12, 2014

WASHINGTON — Sales tumbled across the board at specialty stores, discounters and department stores in May, as retail sales in the overall economy edged up slightly, the Commerce Department’s monthly report showed Thursday.

Apparel and accessories stores posted a seasonally adjusted 0.6 percent decline in sales to $21 billion last month, while department store sales dropped 1.4 percent to $14 billion. Sales at general merchandise stores, a category that includes department stores, fell 0.6 percent to $54.8 billion in May.

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