Home » NEWS » February retail sales up despite frigid weather

February retail sales up despite frigid weather

WASHINGTON — American consumers powered through the winter weather, lifting retail sales in February.

According to the National Retail Federation, retail sales, which exclude automobiles, gas stations and restaurants, increased 0.2 percent adjusted month-to-month and 2.3 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said, “Retailers and consumers endured the harsh winter and they’re hoping both the natural and man-made obstacles to growth will leave with the snow.

However, Shay said challenges persist. “From new overtime mandates to persistent and political posturing on the minimum wage, retailers continue to face serious headwinds placed on them by policymakers in Washington,” he said. “For the economy to fully recover, the Administration and Congress should quit politicking and focus on growth and job creation.”

February retail sales, released by the U.S. Census Bureau, which include categories such as automobiles, gasoline stations, and restaurants, increased 0.3 percent seasonally adjusted month-to-month ($472.2 billion). The Census also reported that retail sales increased 1.5 percent adjusted year-over-year.

NRF chief economist Jack Kleinhenz said, “This month’s retail sales data is encouraging and above expectations. However, neither the jobs nor retail data reflect the fundamental health of the economy. While the weather continues to play tricks on economic forecasts and figures, we expect much-needed clarity come spring as consumers release pent-up demand.”

Additional NRF findings from the February retail sales report include:

• Building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers stores’ sales increased 0.3 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 3.2 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

• Clothing and clothing accessories stores’ sales increased 0.4 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 2.4 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

• Electronics and appliance stores’ sales decreased 0.2 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 2.3 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

• Furniture and home furnishing stores’ sales increased 0.4 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and unchanged unadjusted year-over-year.

• General merchandise stores’ sales decreased 0.3 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 0.9 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

• Health and personal care stores’ sales increased 1.2 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 5.6 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

• Nonstore retailers’ sales increased 1.2 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month and 6.8 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

• Sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores’ sales increased 2.5 percent seasonally-adjusted month-to-month yet decreased 5.3 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

BEFORE YOU GO…

… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About MBJ Staff

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*