California retail sales rose 54% over five years.

Sales climbed to $124 billion in 1982 from $81 billion in 1977, according to figures released by the Bureau of the Census. California was slightly ahead of the 48% increase for the nation as a whole. On average, Californians spent $5,237 each on retail purchases in 1982, $537 more than the average nationwide. Grocery stores scored the biggest sales numbers in California with $26 billion in 1982 sales, followed by new-car dealers with $17 billion and department stores with $13 billion.

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