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March 11, 2011 11:45 AM, EST

Retail Sales Rise by Most in Four Months

Tom Biery/Trans Pixs

Retail sales rose 1% in February, the most in four months, the Commerce Department said Friday.

The eighth straight gain followed a revised 0.7% increase in January that was higher than the 0.3% originally reported.

The February reading matched economists’ forecasts, Bloomberg reported.

Sales were boosted by a 2.3% gain in automobile dealers, while service station sales rose 1.4%, reflecting higher fuel prices. Ten of 13 major categories showed increases.

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