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Slower Tax Refunds and Weather Affect April Retail Sales but Fundamentals 'Remain Positive'

Retail sales were down 0.2 percent in April seasonally adjusted from March but up 5.2 percent unadjusted year-over-year, the National Retail Federation said today. The numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants.

“Slower tax refunds and weather may have been key factors impacting April’s numbers, but the fundamentals remain positive, particularly in long-term comparisons,” NRF Chief Economic Jack Kleinhenz said, citing flooding in the middle of the country and blizzards and extreme temperature swings elsewhere along with a soft housing market that impacted sales of furniture, appliances and building materials. “Despite there being a lot of...

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May 16 8:20 AM, General News



February Retail Sales Increased 2.7 Percent Over 2018

Retail sales were down 0.7 percent in February seasonally adjusted from January but up 2.7 percent unadjusted year-over-year as delays and revisions related to the government shutdown continued to make comparisons difficult, the National Retail Federation said today. The numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants.

“The weaker-than-expected February retail sales numbers reflect colder weather and increased precipitation that kept shoppers home but were also skewed downward because of the government’s upward revision in January’s results,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “The aftereffects of the ...

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Apr 1 2:05 PM, General News


2018 Holiday Sales Grew Amid Turmoil Over Trade Policy and Delay in Data Collection

Holiday retail sales during 2018 grew a lower-than-expected 2.9 percent over the same period in 2017 to $707.5 billion, the National Retail Federation said today after the Commerce Department released data that had been delayed by nearly a month because of the recent government shutdown.

“All signs during the holidays seemed to show that consumers remained confident about the economy,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “However, it appears that worries over the trade war and turmoil in the stock markets impacted consumer behavior more than we expected. There’s also a question of whether the government shutdown and resulting delay in collecting data might have made the results less reliable. It’s very disappointing that clearly avoidable actions by the government influenced consumer confidence and unnecessarily depressed December retail sales ...

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Feb 18 9:03 AM, General News




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