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Retail Sales Rose in April as Consumers ‘Remained Engaged'

Retail Sales Rose in April as Consumers ‘Remained Engaged'

May 17, 2023
"Moderating price levels, continued labor market strength and wage gains have increased consumers' ability to spend," says National Retail Federation.

Showing both month-over-month and year-over-year growth, retail sales bounced back in April, showing e National Retail Federation said on May 16.

"Retail sales rebounded in April, reflecting consumer resilience in the face of elevated economic uncertainty, NRF CEO Matthew Shay said in a statement. "Moderating price levels, continued labor market strength and wage gains have increased consumers' ability to spend. However, they remain cautious and concerned about the current economic environment. Retailers continue to provide competitive pricing and convenience to help cost-sensitive consumers stretch their budgets. "

The U.S. Census Bureau on May 16 said overall retail sales in April were up 0.4% from March and up 1.6% year over year. In March, sales were down 0.7% month over month but up 2.4% year over year.NRF’s calculation of retail sales – which excludes automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants to focus on core retail – showed April was up 0.6% from March and up 2% unadjusted year over year.

In March, sales were down 0.7% month over month but up 3.4% year over year. NRF’s numbers were up 3.7% unadjusted year over year on a three-month moving average as of April. April sales were up in four out of nine retail categories on a yearly basis, led by online sales, health and personal care stores and general merchandise stores, and also rose in four categories on a monthly basis. Specifics from key sectors include:

  • Online and other non-store sales were up 1.2% month over month seasonally adjusted and up 6.4% unadjusted year over year.
  • Health and personal care stores were up 0.9% month over month seasonally adjusted and up 5.8% unadjusted year over year.
  • General merchandise stores were up 0.9% month over month seasonally adjusted and up 4.1% unadjusted year over year.
  • Grocery and beverage stores were down 0.2% month over month seasonally adjusted but up 2.9% unadjusted year over year.
  • Clothing and clothing accessory stores were down 0.3% month over month seasonally adjusted and down 4.1% unadjusted year over year.
  • Building materials and garden supply stores were up 0.5% month over month seasonally adjusted but down 5.7% unadjusted year over year.
  • Electronics and appliance stores were down 0.5% month over month seasonally adjusted and down 8.2% unadjusted year over year.
  • Furniture and home furnishings stores were down 0.7% month over month seasonally adjusted and down 8.8% unadjusted year over year.
  • Sporting goods stores were down 3.3% month over month seasonally adjusted and down 9.1% unadjusted year over year.

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