Retail sales rebounded by 17.7% in May as state and federal authorities eased lock down measures, reversing drops of 8.3% from February to March and 14.7% from March to April.
Analysts suggest that the May rally will have been boosted by pent-up demand for consumers unable to shop during the height of the pandemic, and the growth rate is likely to flatten in June.
The strong bounce back from retail comes after America added 2.5 million jobs in May, leading to a stock market rally on hopes that the economy had found a floor.
Fashion and accessories sales increased by 188% in May as stores reopened, but remain 63% lower than the same month in 2019, according to the US Census Bureau.
Nonstore retailers, which is dominated by ecommerce giants like Amazon, has been the strongest part of the retail market during the Covid crisis and ended May 30.8% up over last year.