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Retail sales drop in June partly due to decline in consumer spending

OTTAWA, Ont. — Statistics Canada says retail sales fell 0.6% in June to $40.1 billion, which partially offset a large gain in May.The biggest decrease in dollar terms was a 1.2% drop at food and beverage stores, with weaker sales reported by all types of stores in this subsector.Analysts had expected a smaller decline following strong results earlier this year.Statistics Canada says retail sales in the first six months of 2013 were still up 1.8% compared to the same period last year.It says strong sales in May, a labour strike in Quebec and flooding in southern Alberta all contributed to lower sales in eight of 11 subsectors in June, representing 57% of total retail trade.Statistics Canada says retail sales fell in Ontario, Quebec, Alberta and Newfoundland and Labrador in June, while British Columbia, Manitoba and Saskatchewan all reported sales gains.In volume terms, retail sales declined 1.2% after three straight months of gains. read more