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Economy in Brief

U.S. Chain Store Sales Remained Low
by Tom Moeller December 11, 2007

Chain store sales in December's first full week held the low level reached at the end of November. A 0.2% uptick was little recovery from the prior week's 2.0% w/w collapse according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)-UBS.

Sales began December 1.3% below the November average which fell 0.2% from the October average.

During the last ten years there has been a 45% correlation between the y/y change in chain store sales and the change in nonauto retail sales less gasoline.

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.

The leading indicator of chain store sales from ICSC-UBS rose 0.2% breaking a string of three consecutive weekly declines.

The Federal Reserve’s 2007 study of noncash payments is available here.

Housing, credit and consumer expenditure from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City can be found here.

ICSC-UBS (SA, 1977=100) 12/08/07 11/31/07 Y/Y 2006 2005 2004
Total Weekly Chain Store Sales 469.3 468.5 2.3% 3.3% 3.6% 4.7%
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