Statistics Canada says retail sale fell 0.1% in August to $51.5 billion as sales at food and beverage stores dropped.
Economists on average had expected an increase of 0.4% for August, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.
Statistics Canada says sales at food and beverage stores fell 0.8% in August, the first move down from the sector in three months. Sales at supermarkets and other grocery stores fell 0.8%, while beer, wine and liquor stores dropped 1.9% and convenience stores edged down 0.1%. Sales at specialty food stores increased 2.3%.
Meanwhile, sales at gasoline stations fell 0.4% as a result of lower prices at the pump, while gasoline sales rose 2.8% in volume terms.
Sales at general merchandise stores gained 0.8% and motor vehicle and parts dealers rose 0.1%.
In volume terms, retail sales increased 0.2% in August.