Week-over-week sales down 7.6%

Chicago ShopperTrak’s National Retail Sales Estimate reported that year-over-year retail sales rose a slight 0.8% for the week ending Jan. 16, while sales slipped 7.6% versus the previous week ending Jan. 9.

As expected, both yearly and weekly sales levels continued to slow last week following the late 2009 holiday spending rush.

While ShopperTrak expects this pattern to continue over the next several weeks, the company said the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday provided a slight boost for the week ending Jan. 23 as consumers took advantage of the extra day to shop.

“Many schools, government offices and other businesses were closed for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, which most likely positively impacted weekly retail performance,” said Bill Martin, co-founder of ShopperTrak. “Historically ShopperTrak’s data shows retail spending pauses a bit following the holidays and we believe this trend will continue throughout the rest of the month and up to President’s Day in mid February.” 

That said, the company’s initial first-quarter analysis showed that sales and traffic levels will fare slightly better than the same three-month period last year.

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