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Economy in Brief

U.S. Chain Store Sales Remain Depressed
by Tom Moeller  September 23, 2014

The International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs reported that chain store sales ticked 0.1% higher last week following a sharp 2.6% decline during the prior week. They strengthened, however, by 4.1% y/y due to declines last September. The gain left sales so far in September are 1.4% below August when sales fell 1.5% from July. During the last ten years there has been a 70% correlation between the y/y change in chain store sales and the change in retail sales at general merchandise stores.

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. General merchandise store sales account for 15% of total retail sales. The data can be found in Haver's SURVEYW database.

ICSC-Goldman Sachs (SA, 1977=100) 09/20/14 09/13/14 09/06/14 Y/Y 2013 2012 2011
Total Weekly Chain Store Sales 561.8 561.2 576.0 4.1% 2.3% 3.0% 3.2%
   W/W % 0.1 -2.6 0.7 -- -- -- --
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