WASHINGTON – Retail sales at department stores increased 0.8 percent to $17.1 billion in May compared to a month earlier, while sales at specialty stores increased 0.5 percent to $18.98 billion.

Sales for all retail and food service providers grew a seasonally adjusted 1 percent in the month, after dropping 0.2 percent in April. The increase beat consensus expectations for the month.

Compared with a year ago, specialty stores were down 0.1 percent in May and department stores tumbled 2.6 percent.

For complete coverage, see Friday’s WWD.

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