Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Retail Sales increased 0.3% in January

by Bill McBride on 2/15/2011 08:30:00 AM

On a monthly basis, retail sales increased 0.3% from December to January(seasonally adjusted, after revisions), and sales were up 7.8% from January 2010.

Retail Sales Click on graph for larger image in new window.

This graph shows retail sales since 1992. This is monthly retail sales, seasonally adjusted (total and ex-gasoline).

Retail sales are up 13.7% from the bottom, and now 0.4% above the pre-recession peak.

Year-over-year change in Retail Sales
The second graph shows the year-over-year change in retail sales (ex-gasoline) since 1993.

Retail sales ex-gasoline increased by 7.1% on a YoY basis (7.8% for all retail sales).

Here is the Census Bureau report:

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for January, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $381.6 billion, an increase of 0.3 percent (±0.5%) from the previous month, and 7.8 percent (±0.7%) above January 2010.
This was below expectations for a 0.5% increase. Retail sales ex-autos were up 0.3%; also below expectations of a 0.5% increase. Although lower than expected, retail sales are now above the pre-recession peak in November 2007.

• Also, from the NY Fed: Empire State Manufacturing Survey
The Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that conditions for New York manufacturers continued to improve in February. The general business conditions index rose 3.5 points to 15.4. The new orders index edged down just slightly, to 11.8. The shipments index retreated 14 points, reversing much of January's 18-point surge, but remained positive at 11.3. The inventories index continued to climb from its December low, reaching its highest level since April. The index for number of employees fell, but the average workweek measure moved up. The prices paid index climbed to a two-and-a half-year high in February, but the measure for prices received was little changed, suggesting some pressure on profit margins. The forward-looking indexes continued to signal widespread optimism, though to a somewhat lesser degree than in January. Indexes for expected prices, both paid and received, declined moderately, after reaching multiyear highs last month.
This was slightly above expectations for an increase to 15.0.