Retail Sales Increase Demonstrates Confident but Cautious Consumer
Aug 16, 2012
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Retail sales in the United States were slightly higher in July 2012, ending a three-month losing streak and defying most economist expectations. The National Retail Federation said July sales showed consumers are "gaining some semblance of confidence this summer."

July retail sales (not including cars, gas stations, and restaurants) were up 0.8%, seasonally adjusted, from June 2012 and 1.2%, unadjusted, from July 2011.

Electronics and appliance stores' sales increased 0.9% seasonally-adjusted month-to-month yet decreased 1.1% unadjusted year-over-year.

"Despite high unemployment, and political and fiscal uncertainty, consumers are spending again, albeit cautiously," NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. "Retail sales continue to remain resilient in the face of bleak international news, with retailers on track with sustained sales growth year-over-year and year to date. Retail sales will continue to see modest growth in the fall and winter."

The Department of Commerce said July total retail sale (including cars, gas stations, and restaurants) were up 0.8%, seasonally adjusted, from June 2012 and were 4.1% adjusted from July 2011. (Unadjusted, NRF reported, it would be up 3.4% from July 2011.)

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