LBM, garden supplies among drivers of retail growth

OTTAWA ― Retail sales rose 1.1% to $51.3 billion in March, StatCan reports, the second consecutive monthly increase. Sales were higher in seven of 11 subsectors, representing 39% of retail trade. Higher sales at gasoline stations and building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers were the main contributors to the increase. The latter rose 4.3% in March following a decline in February, marking the third increase in four months. After removing the effects of price changes, retail sales in volume terms were up 0.3%. For the first quarter, retail sales edged up 0.1% following a 0.5% decrease in the fourth quarter. In volume terms, retail sales edged down 0.1% in the first quarter.