Retail sales at U.S. stores fell 1.2% in September, the largest decline in three years, with sales down virtually across the board, according to data released yesterday by the Commerce Department.

Sales excluding motor vehicles were down 0.6%, while sales excluding both motor vehicles and fell 0.7%. Motor vehicle sales posted a 3.8% drop, while gasoline station sales posted only a 0.1% rise after falling 3.0% in August.

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