May 15, 2012 8:45 AM, EDT

Retail Sales Rise 0.1% in April

Larry Smith/Trans Pixs

Retail sales rose 0.1% in April, the slowest pace this year, the Commerce Department said Tuesday.

The uptick followed a 0.7% gain in March that was slightly below the 0.8% originally reported.

The April matched economists’ forecasts, Bloomberg reported.

Auto dealers’ sales rose 0.5%, up from a 0.2% gain in March. Purchases excluding autos rose 0.1%.

Department store, building materials and clothing sales all slowed, though nine of 13 major categories improved.

Some of the slowdown was due to unseasonably warm weather in the first quarter, which may have led to stronger sales earlier in the year, Bloomberg said.

Almost all trucking operations depend on the health of retail sales because such sales involve nearly every type of cargo.