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Monday, November 16, 2009

Retail Sales Increase in October

by Calculated Risk on 11/16/2009 08:30:00 AM

On a monthly basis, retail sales increased 1.4% from September to October (seasonally adjusted), and sales are off 1.7% from October 2008. Excluding auto sales and parts, retail sales rose 0.2% in October.

The increase in October was mostly a rebound from the decline in September.

Real 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).

This shows that retail sales fell off a cliff in late 2008, and appear to have bottomed, but at a much lower level.

The red line shows retail sales ex-gasoline and shows there has been little increase in final demand.

Year-over-year change in Retail SalesThe second graph shows the year-over-year change in retail sales since 1993.

Real retail sales declined by 1.7% on a YoY basis. The year-over-year comparisons are much easier now since retail sales collapsed in October 2008. Retail sales bottomed in December 2008.

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 October, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $347.5 billion, an increase of 1.4 percent (±0.5%) from the previous month, but 1.7 percent (±0.5%) below October 2008. Total sales for the August through October 2009 period were up 1.5 percent (±0.3%) from the same period a year ago. The August to September 2009 percent change was revised from -1.5 percent (±0.5%) to -2.3 percent (±0.3%).
It appears retail sales have bottomed, but there has been little pickup in final demand.