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Economy in Brief

U.S. Chain Store Sales Tick Up W/W but Trend Lower
by Tom Moeller  June 18, 2013

Consumer spending this month seems to be on a weak footing. The International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs reported that chain store sales inched up 0.3% last week (2.5% y/y). During the week earlier, however, sales fell 2.7%. As a result, the average level of June sales is 1.9% below May after that month's 2.2% decline. During the last ten years there has been a 61% correlation between the y/y change in chain store sales and the change in retail sales at general merchandise stores. That correlation recently has declined.

General merchandise store sales account for 15% of total retail sales. The ICSC-Goldman Sachs 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.

ICSC-Goldman Sachs (SA, 1977=100) 06/15/13 06/08/13/13 06/01/13 Y/Y 2012 2011 2010
Total Weekly Chain Store Sales 540.1 538.3 553.4 2.5% 3.0% 3.2% 2.9%
   W/W % 0.3 -2.7 1.9 -- -- -- --
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