July 2013 seasonally adjusted retail sales in the United States--not including cars, gas stations, and restaurants--were up 0.3% from June and were up 5.0% unadjusted year-over-year.
Electronics and appliance retailer sales were down 0.1%, seasonally adjusted, from June but were up 0.8% unadjusted year-over-year.
"Consumers continue to grind forward in July, marking 13 consecutive months of retail sales gains," said National Retail Federation President and CEO Matthew Shay said. "However consumers alone can't be expected to shoulder the burden of the economy. Fiscal and monetary policy uncertainties combined with stagnant economic and employment conditions continue to breed a volatile market with extreme swings in consumer spending. The economy can't seem to maintain any amount of momentum. We just can't seem to pull ourselves up."
July retail sales, released by the U.S. Census Bureau, showed total retail and food services sales--including non-general merchandise categories like cars, gas stations, and restaurants--were up 0.2% seasonally adjusted month-to-month and were up 5.4% adjusted year-over-year.
"Spending has stalled and the economy is stuck in neutral," NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. "Even with modest employment gains and steady consumer confidence, Americans remain in a cautiously-positive spending pattern.
Kleinhenz suggested that declines in sales by home-based retailers as possibly pointing to an end to a year-long housing increase. "This month's retail sales report will make any decision on tapering that much harder for policymakers in D.C."
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