Retail sales decrease due to poor vehicle sales
Oct. 30, 2013 – Total retail sales decreased by 0.1 percent in September from the previous month, primarily due to poor vehicle sales during the month, according to NAFCU Senior Economist Curt Long.
Core retail sales – excluding light vehicles and gasoline – increased by 0.4 percent in September, while retail sales of autos and gas decreased by 1.4 percent. Core retail sales in September increased by 3.9 percent from a year ago, and auto and gas by 1.7 percent. Year-over-year growth in retail sales was 3.2 percent in September.
“Total retail sales growth has varied with auto sales and gas prices throughout the year, while core retail sales have remained fairly steady,” Long said in a NAFCU Macro Data Flash report.
Results among the major retail segments were mixed in September. Sales at both grocery stores and restaurants increased by 0.9 percent during the month, followed by electronics and appliance stores (0.7 percent) and sporting goods and hobbies stores (0.5 percent). Sales dropped most severely for motor vehicle and parts stores (-2.2 percent) and clothing and accessory stores (-0.5 percent).
“The impact from the government shutdown in September is expected to affect October’s retail sales numbers,” Long said.