Friday, April 12, 2013

Retail Sales decline 0.4% in March

by Calculated Risk on 4/12/2013 08:49:00 AM

On a monthly basis, retail sales decreased 0.4% from February to March (seasonally adjusted), and sales were up 2.8% from March 2012. From the Census Bureau report:

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for March, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $418.3 billion, a decrease of 0.4 percent from the previous month, but 2.8 percent above March 2012. ... The January to February 2013 percent change was revised from +1.1 percent to +1.0 percent (±0.2%).
Retail Sales Click on graph for larger image.

Sales for January were revised down too.

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

Retail sales are up 26.2% from the bottom, and now 11.2% above the pre-recession peak (not inflation adjusted)

Retail sales ex-autos decreased 0.4%. Retail sales ex-gasoline decreased 0.2%.

Excluding gasoline, retail sales are up 23.5% from the bottom, and now 10.4% above the pre-recession peak (not inflation adjusted).

Year-over-year change in Retail SalesThe second graph shows the year-over-year change in retail sales and food service (ex-gasoline) since 1993.

Retail sales ex-gasoline increased by 3.3% on a YoY basis (2.8% for all retail sales).

This was below the consensus forecast of no change in retail sales.  Lower gasoline prices subtracted from retail sales - after boosting sales in February.