FXstreet.com (Barcelona) - US retail sales have decreased larger than expected in December, with a 0.4% fall, instead of the 0.1% increase expected, as higher energy prices could have discouraged consumption, according to data by the Commerce Department.

Sales for November have been revised to a 10% increase, down from the 1.2% rise estimated previously. On the whole 2007 retail sales have risen 4.2%, a somewhat lower increase than the 5.9% rise posted in 2006.

Sales of cars and parts decreased 0.4% in December, while sales for all other products except cars and parts fell 0.4%, instead of the 0.2% expected. In November, retail sales excluding cars increased 1.7%. Gasoline station sales fell 1.7% in December, while gas sales rose 7.6% excluding sales at gas stations, all other sales increased 0.2%.