Sales at U.S. retailers rose slightly in April and exceeded Wall Street's forecast, as broad demand for most goods outweighed a sharp drop in spending at gas stations, according to the U.S. Commerce Department, MarketWatch reported.

Retail sales rose a seasonally adjusted 0.1 percent, according the Commerce Department report released today.

Economists polled by MarketWatch had forecast a 0.6 percent decline in retail sales.

Sales at gas stations sank 4.7 percent to mark the biggest decline in more than five years. Yet retail spending actually climbed 0.6 percent. in April if gasoline is excluded.

March's decline in retail sales was revised to 0.5 percent from 0.4 percent. The increase in sales in February was revised up to 1.1 percent, MarketWatch said.