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Economy in Brief

Chain Store Sales Gain
by Tom Moeller May 3, 2005

Chain store sales gained 0.5% during the final week of April according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)-UBS survey. The increase raised the average of sales in April 0.4% versus March when sales fell 0.2%.

During the last ten years there has been a 56% correlation between the y/y change in chain store sales and the change in non-auto retail sales less gasoline, as published by the US Census Department. Chain store sales correspond directly with roughly 14% of non-auto retail sales less gasoline.

The leading indicator of chain store sales from ICSC ticked 0.1% (-0.3% y/y) higher, the third consecutive weekly rise following three declines.

The ICSC-UBS retail chain-store sales index is constructed using the same-store sales (stores open for one year) reported by 78 stores of seven retailers: Dayton Hudson, Federated, Kmart, May, J.C. Penney, Sears and Wal-Mart.

Reexamining the Consumption-Wealth Relationship: The Role of Uncertainty from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York can be found here.

ICSC-UBS (SA, 1977=100) 04/30/05 04/23/05 Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Total Weekly Chain Store Sales 458.0 455.8 3.0% 4.6% 2.9% 3.6%
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