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US Retail Sales Rise Slightly

Shoppers unload their items at Costco in Mountain View, California, August 2011. (file photo)

U.S. retail sales grew more slowly in October, giving a moderate boost to the consumer spending segment that drives most U.S. economic activity.

Tuesday's report from the Commerce Department says the gain was one-half of a percent in October, which is less than the previous month.

Consumers have been spending more on electronics, appliances, hardware, and building supplies.

Spending has been restrained by slow growth and high unemployment, which has been at 9 percent or worse for the past two years.

A separate report showed U.S. inflation eased a bit in October, as wholesale prices fell three-tenths of one percent.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.