Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
- Retail Sales
Retail sales rose 0.5 percent in July, following an upwardly revised 0.3 percent (from 0.1 percent) increase in June. Nominal sales were up across most broad categories, except building material and supply dealers (down 0.4 percent), sporting goods, hobby, book, and music stores (down 1.5 percent), and food services and drinking places (down 0.1 percent). Some of the largest gainers in July include miscellaneous store retailers (up 2.4 percent), gasoline stations (up 1.6 percent), and electronics and appliance stores (up 1.4 percent). The near-term (3-month) annualized growth rate rebounded to 2.8 percent through July, after slowing from a recent high of 11.8 percent in March to 1.7 percent in June. Over the past year, retail sales are up 8.5 percent. An alternative gauge of retail spending—“core” retail sales (sales excluding autos, building supplies, and gas stations)—increased 0.3 percent in July, following a 0.4 percent increase in June (that was revised up by 0.3 percentage points). Given July’s increase and the strong upward revision to June’s data, the 3-month annualized growth rate in “core” retail sales rose to 4.1 percent, though remains below its year-over-year growth rate of 6.4 percent.