WASHINGTON (BRAIN) — July retail sales were up 0.4 percent seasonally adjusted from June and increased 4.9 percent unadjusted year-over-year, according to an analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data by the National Retail Federation. The numbers exclude automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants.
“Today’s numbers mirror the economy, which is in very good shape,” NRF’s chief economist, Jack Kleinhenz, said. He cited consumer confidence, a strengthening labor market and more after-tax dollars in household wallets thanks to tax reform. “Consumer fundamentals remain healthy and continue to provide wherewithal for consumers to drive domestic economic growth.”
“Consumer spending is the backbone of the current economic expansion but the fly in the ointment is uncertainty regarding tariffs,” Kleinhenz said. “If they escalate, they will no doubt weigh on confidence and household spending.”
The July results build on improvement seen in June, which was down 0.1 percent monthly from May but up 3.9 percent year-over-year.
The Census Bureau said overall July sales — including automobiles, gasoline and restaurants — were up 0.5 percent seasonally adjusted from June and up 6.4 percent year-over-year.
The NRF …read more