New York City A report released Tuesday by the International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs said that chain-store sales for the week ended March 13 rose 3.2% from the year-earlier period.
On a week-over-week basis, sales fell 0.4%.
"Despite the wrath of Mother Nature in the Northeast, consumers were not deterred in unleashing a little of their own pent-up demand, especially early in the week-which helped to offset the weekend weather drag on sales," said Michael Niemira, ICSC's chief economist. "As the industry heads into the last two weeks of the month retailers should see a lift from the earlier Easter that may further accentuate the uptick for the month of March."
Niemira forecast March sales to rise 3% to 3.5%.