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NRF: Weather dampens Jan. retail sales

Washington, D.C. — Consumers leveled off post-holiday shopping and spending in the beginning of the year due in part to severe winter weather in much of the country. According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), January 2014 retail sales, excluding automobiles, gas stations and restaurants, were flat seasonally adjusted month-to-month, yet increased 3% unadjusted year-over-year.

January retail sales released by the U.S. Census Bureau, which include categories such as automobiles, gasoline stations, and restaurants, decreased 0.4% seasonally adjusted month-to-month, yet increased 2.6% adjusted year-over-year.

Other findings from the January retail sales report include:

  • Building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers stores’ sales increased 1.4% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 3.3% unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Clothing and clothing accessories stores' sales decreased 0.9% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month, yet increased 1.4% unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Electronics and appliance stores’ sales increased 0.4% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month, yet decreased 4.9% unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Furniture and home furnishing stores’ sales decreased 0.6% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month, and 2.1% unadjusted year-over-year.
  • General merchandise stores’ sales decreased 0.1% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month, yet increased 1.4% unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Health and personal care stores’ sales decreased 0.6% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month, yet increased 3.1% unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Non-store retailers’ sales decreased 0.6% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month, yet increased 6.5% unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores’ sales decreased 1.4% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 1.5% unadjusted year-over-year.

“Following a solid holiday sales season, it seems that many consumers decided to take a break from the stores and shopping malls this January in an attempt to avoid winter weather,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. “While the dip in retail sales was somewhat anticipated, it is concerning that both jobless claims came in above projections and that consumer spending were flat in January; it’s not the way to kick off a new year.

 

 

© 2014