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Retail Sales Rise for Third Straight Month

Retail sales grew 0.6% in September.

NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) -- Retail sales rose 0.6%, its third consecutive increase -- a much-needed signal to ease lingering fears of a double-dip in consumer spending, especially headed into the holiday season.

Excluding autos, sales rose 0.4%. Both numbers fell in-line with economists forecast. Car dealers posted a 1.6% uptick, their biggest gain since March.

The Commerce Department also revised August sales to up 0.7% from a gain of 0.4%.

While gains were see nearly across the board, clothing stores reported a decline in September. Internet retailers climbed 1% and electronic and appliance stores jumped 1.5%, the most since February.

--Written by Jeanine Poggi in New York.

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