According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), retail sales fell 0.2% in May 2011. Econintersect believes retail sales have improved over April – even on an inflation adjusted basis.
Overall, retail sales do not look that bad considering all the other bad data being received recently. Sales growth this year has held in a range between 7.5% and 9%. The headlines according to the BLS:
The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for May, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $387.1 billion, a decrease of 0.2 percent (±0.5%)* from the previous month, but 7.7 percent (±0.7%) above May 2010. Total sales for the March through May 2011 period were up 7.5 percent (±0.5%) from the same period a year ago. The March to April 2011 percent change was revised from +0.5 percent (±0.5%)* to +0.3 percent (±0.3%)*. Retail trade sales were down 0.3 percent (±0.5%)* from April 2011, but 8.0 percent (±0.7%) above last year. Gasoline stations sales were up 22.3 percent (±1.7%) from May 2010 and nonstore retailers sales were up 15.9 percent (±3.1%) from last year
Overall there were no revelations in the data.
April 2011 Wholesale Sales: No Signs of Slowing Economy by Steven Hansen
Auto Sales are Dismal by John Lounsbury
The Consumer is Bouncing Along the Bottom by Rick Davis
Consumers are Coming to Terms with Frugality by Rick Davis
Strong Retail Sales Do Not Point to Real Economic Growth by Steven Hansen
Business Sales Up Strongly in March 2011 by Steven Hansen