June Retail Sales Mixed As Retailers Prepare for Back-to-School, According to NRF
Washington, July 14, 2010 – June retail sales were more of a mixed bag than a solid indicator of the direction of consumer spending. According to the National Retail Federation, June retail industry sales (which exclude automobiles, gas stations, and restaurants) decreased 0.5 percent seasonally adjusted over May and increased 3.3 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
June retail sales released today by the U.S. Commerce Department show total retail sales (which include non-general merchandise categories such as autos, gasoline stations and restaurants) decreased 0.5 percent seasonally adjusted over May and increased 4.9 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
“Today’s data shows consumers continue to take a cautious approach towards shopping,” said NRF President and CEO Matt Shay. “However, growth in key areas such as electronics, apparel and department stores is an encouraging sign as we enter the back-to-school shopping season.”
“Moderate growth these last few months proves that consumer uncertainty remains. A slow- growing economy and high unemployment rates will continue to hinder consumers’ decisions to spend on discretionary items, said NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz.
As witnessed last month, June retail sales showed solid year-over-year growth but modest month-to-month growth in most sectors. Electronics and appliance stores sales increased 1.3 percent seasonally adjusted from last month and 7.6 percent unadjusted over last year. Sales at furniture and home furnishing stores decreased 1.1 percent seasonally adjusted month-to-month but increased 2.1 percent unadjusted year-over-year. Health and personal care stores sales increased 0.5 percent seasonally adjusted over May and 2.2 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
Clothing and clothing accessory stores sales increased 0.6 seasonally adjusted and a solid 6.1 percent unadjusted over last June. The increase in department store sales (1.1% seasonally adjusted and 0.5% unadjusted) bodes well as retailers head into the all-important back to school season.
NRF will release its 2010 back to school/college survey tomorrow, July 15.
As the world's largest retail trade association and the voice of retail worldwide, the National Retail Federation's global membership includes retailers of all sizes, formats and channels of distribution as well as chain restaurants and industry partners from the U.S. and more than 45 countries abroad. In the U.S., NRF represents the breadth and diversity of an industry with more than 1.6 million American companies that employ nearly 25 million workers and generated 2009 sales of $2.3 trillion. www.nrf.com