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Economy in Brief

U.S. Chain Store Sales Slipped Again
by Tom Moeller April 1, 2008

Chain store sales slipped another 0.2% last week, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers ICSC-UBS Chain Store survey. Together with the prior week's 0.4% slip, the two declines left sales in March essentially flat with the February average after 0.4% increase.

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.

During the latest week the leading indicator of chain store sales from ICSC-UBS surged 0.7% and recovered after the prior week's 0.5% decline.

Assessing Employment Growth in 2007 from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco can be found here.

ICSC-UBS (SA, 1977=100) 03/29/08 03/22/08 Y/Y 2007 2006 2005
Total Weekly Chain Store Sales 487.5 488.3 0.5% 2.8% 3.3% 3.6%
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