US Macro Updates

The One Stop Portal for US Macroeconomic Data. Simplified and Summarized! 

We simplify and summarize key data so that you don’t have to spend hours reading confusing and long media releases. Read key economic releases and major events here in under 2 minutes. And we will explain the key takeaway for you. Stay informed and form a robust view on macroeconomic matters to aid your successful investment decisions

15th May 2024

US Retail Sales

Key takeaway: The Retail Sales report has been a bit of a roller coaster in 2024. The first two months of the year had posted weaker than expected Retail Sales prints. Retail Sales bounced back again in March and now have once again disappointed in April. Advance estimates of US retail and food service sales for April 2024 (seasonally adjusted) were US$705.2 Bn, mostly unchanged from the previous month. The print was substantially lower than consensus expectations of an increase of 0.4%. To top that up, last month’s Retail Sales number was also revised down from 0.7% to 0.6%. Retail spend in almost every category was lower in April. The largest drops were seen in sporting goods, non-store retailers, motor vehicles and parts and furniture stores. Food services and drinking places, the only services category in the report, posted a muted rise of 0.2% after having fallen 0.1% last month. Core retail sales, which excludes motor vehicles and parts, grew a muted 0.2%. However, even that can be somewhat attributed to the price rise in gasoline. Excluding gasoline sales, Retail Sales dropped 0.2%. Finally, Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales decreased 0.3% on a m-o-m basis in April. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. The Atlanta Fed’s GDP nowcast for Q2 was reduced from 4.2% to 3.8%. Treasury yields were sharply lower in response to the weak retail sales print as well as the lower than expected CPI print. 

15th Apr 2024

Key takeaway: After 2 months of weaker Retail Sales prints, we are once again back in familiar territory helmed by a strong American consumer. Advance estimates of US retail and food service sales for March 2024 (seasonally adjusted) were US$709.6 Bn, up 0.7% from the previous month. The print was also substantially higher than consensus expectations of an increase of 0.4%. To top that up, last month’s Retail Sales number was also revised up from 0.6% to 0.9%. With a hotter than expected Retail Sales print, treasury yields were substantially higher in the morning session. Core retail sales, which excludes motor vehicles and parts, was up 1.1% m-o-m. Core Retail Sales were also substantially higher than consensus expectations of 0.5%. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales increased 1.1% on a m-o-m basis in March. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

14th Mar 2024

Key takeaway: Bad news usually tends to come in bunched together! And in this case it has come so for two consecutive months. Similar to January, February has also posted a higher than expected CPI and PPI and lower than expected Retail Sales. The data is now causing a legitimate concern of slowing growth at a time when prices remain elevated. Advance estimates of US retail and food service sales for February 2024 (seasonally adjusted) were US$700.7 Bn, up 0.6% from the previous month, but more importantly lower than consensus expectations of an increase of 0.8%. The January retail sales number was also revised down substantially from minus 0.6% to minus 1.1%. January was the first substantial negative print since March 2023. Moreover, Retail Sales for December 2023 had also revised down from +0.6% to +0.4%. The US consumer has been the pillar supporting the robust growth in the US economy in 2023. Any signs of faltering consumer demand will be closely watched. While the expectation remains that as excess savings from the pandemic fiscal largesse dwindles and the lagged effects of rate hikes will come through and finally we will see some softness in consumption, it still might be too early to call the start of a trend here. However, two months is definitely more of a trend than one month! Core retail sales, which excludes motor vehicles and parts, was up 0.3% m-o-m. Core Retail Sales were also lower than consensus expectations. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales was unchanged on a m-o-m basis in February. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

15th Feb 2024

Key takeaway: Bad news usually tends to come in bunched together! On the back of a disappointing inflation print, US Retail Sales for January also surprised markets on the downside. Advance estimates of US retail and food service sales for January 2024 (seasonally adjusted) were US$700 Bn, down 0.8% from the previous month. This is the first substantial negative print since March 2023. Moreover, Retail Sales for December 2023 was also revised down from +0.6% to +0.4%. The US consumer has been the pillar supporting the robust growth in the US economy in 2023. Any signs of faltering consumer demand will be closely watched. While the expectation remains that as excess savings from the pandemic fiscal largesse dwindles and the lagged effects of rate hikes will come through and finally we will see some softness in consumption, it might be too early to call the start of a trend here. Core retail sales, which excludes motor vehicles and parts, were also down by 0.6% m-o-m. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales also declined by 0.4% in January. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

17th Jan 2024

Key takeaway: US Retail Sales data has once again surprised to the upside, thanks to the resilient American consumer. This makes it two months in a row and the Fed will be taking good notice of this data point. 2 Year Treasury yields immediately spiked 10 basis points in response to the release. The market based probability of a rate cut in March also consequently moved lower. Advance estimates of US retail and food services for December 2023 were $771bn, up 0.6% from the previous month and up 5.6% from December 2022. Even core retail sales, which excludes motor vehicles and parts, were up a solid 0.4%. The holiday shopping spend seems robust and that will continue to reflect in GDP and broader economic data. Most categories were up with motor vehicles and parts, non-store retailers and clothing goods recording the largest increase. The expectation though remains that as excess savings from the pandemic fiscal largesse dwindles and the lagged effects of rate hikes come through, we are bound to see some softness in consumption. However, the US consumer has kept surprising one and all. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales also increased by 0.8% in December. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

14th Dec 2023

Key takeaway: After recording a decline in the month of October for the first time in 6 months, Retail Sales once again surprised on the upside in November. Advance estimates of US retail and food services for November 2023 were $705bn, up 0.3% from the previous month and up 4.1% from November 2022. Even core retail sales, excluding motor vehicles and parts and gasoline, were up a solid 0.6%. The holiday shopping spend seems robust and that will continue to reflect in GDP and broader economic data. Most categories were up with food services, non-store retailers and sporting goods recording the largest increase. The expectation though remains that as excess savings from the pandemic fiscal largesse dwindles and the lagged effects of rate hikes come through, we are bound to see some softness in consumption. However, the US consumer has kept surprising one and all. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales also increased by 0.4% in November. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

15th Nov 2023

Key takeaway: Retail Sales fell on a m-o-m basis for the first time since March as consumers cut spending on motor vehicles, furniture and miscellaneous store items. While this is the first decrease since March, it is too early to declare it alarming. Firstly September Retail Sales were revised up from 0.7% in the earlier print to 0.9% – which made the base effect larger for the October print. Second, Retail Sales excluding motor vehicle and parts and gasoline sales, still grew 0.1%. Third, both prints – headline Retail Sales and Core Retail Sales – beat consensus expectations. However, it is also important to bear in mind that, as excess savings from the pandemic fiscal largesse dwindles and the lagged effects of rate hikes come through, we are bound to see some softness in consumption. It is the extent of this softness that is the key unknown. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales also increased by 0.2% in October. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

17th Oct 2023

Key takeaway: This feels like deja vu! Once again, for the nth time in recent history, Retail Sales have surprised on the upside. The US consumer has kept surprising everyone with its resilience! The latest data showed Retail Sales grew a substantial 0.7% m-o-m in September. Consensus expectations were an increase of 0.3%. Even last month’s Retail Sales data was revised upwards. Unlike last month though, the increase in September retail sales was more uniform across categories. August Retail Sales, after excluding motor vehicle and parts and gasoline, had grown by a more subdued 0.3% m-o-m (revised). However, retail sales in September, after excluding motor vehicle parts and gasoline, still grew at a solid 0.6%. Miscellaneous store retailers saw the largest jump of 3.0%. The bottom line is that Retail Sales have remained far more resilient than anyone expected and that has been a massive tailwind for the US economy. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales also increased by a solid 0.6% in September. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

14th Sep 2023

Key takeaway: Once again, for the nth time in recent history, Retail Sales have surprised on the upside. The US consumer has kept surprising everyone with its resilience! The latest data showed Retail Sales in July grew a substantial 0.6% m-o-m. Consensus expectations were an increase of 0.2%. However, the latest retail sales data release was more nuanced than past months. After excluding motor vehicle and parts and gasoline sales, retail sales grew by a more subdued 0.2% m-o-m. More specifically, almost every category, excluding gasoline, either declined or decelerated from the previous month of July. Furniture and home furnishings declined 1.0%, Sporting goods declined 1.6%, etc. Yet, the bottom line is that Retail Sales have remained far more resilient than anyone expected and that has been a massive tailwind for the US economy. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales increased by a more subdued 0.1% in Aug. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

15th Aug 2023

Key takeaway: One word. Massive! Retail Sales once again surprised on the upside – and this time – massively. The US consumer has kept surprising everyone with their resilience and the resilient consumption story is the only one that firmly stands between the US and a recession! The latest data showed Retail Sales in July grew a massive 0.7% m-o-m. Consensus expectations were an increase of 0.4%. Even after stripping out the volatile motor vehicles and parts, Retail sales grew a massive 1.0% when consensus expectations were minus 0.3%. Even last month’s headline retail sales number was revised up from 0.2% to 0.3%. As a recap for the year –  after an exceptional January reading, Retail Sales were down both in Feb (minus 0.2%) as well as Mar (minus 0.7%). However, Retail Sales bounced back up again in April (+0.4%). And that was followed up by 0.5% in May and 0.3% in June. Taken together Retail Sales have held up spectacularly well in 1H 2023 and that showed up in the overall GDP numbers for the first half. It looks like that trend has continued in July. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales increased by a huge 1.0% in Jul (when consensus expectations were + 0.2%!). The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

18th Jul 2023

Key takeaway: The latest data showed Retail Sales in June grew a meagre 0.2% m-o-m. The initial perception was that this was a fairly weak retail sales print. However, the details in the report provide a different picture. Most importantly, the previous month’s number was revised up from 0.3% to 0.5%. As a recap for the year –  after an exceptional January reading, Retail Sales were down both in Feb (minus 0.2%) as well as Mar (minus 0.7%). However, Retail Sales bounced back up again in April (+0.4%). And that was followed up by 0.5% in May and 0.2% in June. Taken together Retail Sales have held up spectacularly well in 1H 2023 and that is showing up in the overall GDP numbers. A large part of previous months’ retail sales growth had been in the volatile components of motor vehicles and parts and building materials. So it was logical that motor vehicles and building materials moderated a bit in June. However, core categories like furniture, home furnishings, electronics grew solidly in June. Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales increased by a huge 0.6% in Jun (when consensus expectations was for a drop of 0.3%!). The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

15th Jun 2023

Key takeaway: The latest data showed Retail Sales in May grew 0.3% m-o-m. This follows an equally decent 0.4% m-o-m growth registered in the previous month of April. While 500 basis points of interest rate hikes and dwindling pandemic excess savings are gradually having an effect on Retail Sales, the numbers still remain high enough to warrant concerns over persistent inflation. It is worth repeating Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin’s line from a recent CNBC interview – “Demand is cooling, but is not cold yet”.  After an exceptional January reading, Retail Sales were down both in Feb (minus 0.2%) as well as Mar (minus 0.7%). However, Retail Sales bounced back up again in April (+0.4%). And that has been followed up by 0.3% in May. However, a large part of this growth was seen in 2 segments – Motor vehicles and parts and Building Materials. Also, Core Retail Sales excluding motor vehicles and parts grew at a modest 0.1% in May. Gasoline stations registered a large fall of 2.6% m-o-m. Compared to the prior year, Gasoline sales were lower by 20% in May! Finally, “Retail Control Group” Sales increased by 0.2% in May. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

16th May 2023

Key takeaway: I would like to borrow Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin’s line from a recent CNBC interview to describe this month’s Retail Sales report. “Demand is cooling, but is not cold yet”.  After an exceptional January reading, Retail Sales were down both in Feb (minus 0.2%) as well as Mar (minus 0.7%). However, Retail Sales bounced back up again in April (+0.4%). At the same time it is also key to note that it was significantly lower than consensus expectations (0.8%). When you view this headline number (which is not adjusted for inflation) with the CPI m-o-m increase in April of 0.4%, it becomes clearer than Retail Sales on a real basis have probably remained flat. The impact of tighter monetary policy on consumption is probably being evidenced more clearly now. Barring the exceptional January and this latest April print, retail sales have fallen m-o-m in 4 of the past 6 months. Core retail sales, which exclude automobile, also grew 0.4% and in line with consensus expectations. Gasoline stations registered a large fall of 0.8%. This is despite average prices at the pump being higher in April compared to May. “Retail Control Group” Sales increased by 0.7% in Apr. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. 

14th Apr 2023

Key takeaway: After an exceptional January reading, Retail Sales were down both in Feb (minus 0.2%) as well as Mar (minus 1.0%). The impact of tighter monetary policy on consumption is probably being evidenced more clearly now. Barring the exceptional January, retail sales have fallen m-o-m in 4 of the past 5 months. Unlike the previous month, the fall in sales was quite broad based in March with drops in autos, furniture, electronics, food and beverage, gasoline, clothing and general merchandise. Food services and drinking places, which had been the pocket of strength in retail sales, also grew only 0.1% m-o-m. “Retail Control Group” Sales fell by 0.3% in Mar. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. Even though March registered a fall in “Retail Control Group Sales”, the large increases registered in Jan and Feb, make it certain that the consumption number in the 1Q GDP release will be a robust one. 

15th Mar 2023

Key takeaway: After an exceptional January reading, Retail Sales were down once again in Feb (minus 0.4%).  However a large part of the m-o-m decrease was due to 1.8% drop in automobiles. Excluding autos, core retail sales fell a much more modest 0.1%. While the data continued to point to a weakening trend, the strength of the consumer still remains a key point. Food services and drinking places registered a fall of 2.2% after rising a huge 15.3% in Jan. Similar to some of the other Jan economic data, market participants were keen to observe revisions to Jan Retail Sales data in the Feb data release. However, contrary to many market participant expectations, Retail sales for Jan were revised up from 3.0% to 3.2%. “Retail Control Group” Sales were also up 0.5% in Feb. This accompanied another upward revision in Retail Control Group Sales from 1.7% to 2.3% in Jan. The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP. It is little surprise that the Atlanta Fed GDP tracker points to Q1 GDP growth forecast of 3.2%!

15th Feb 2023

Key takeaway: Retail sales kept up with this week’s trend of massive upside surprises. A m-o-m growth rate of 3% is simply stellar and almost as good as the 500K jobs print of January. In a period where inflation is slowing or sometimes even negative on a m-o-m basis, retail sales jumping up 3% is astounding. The growth was also very broad with almost every category recording a substantial number. For instance – Food Services – the only services category in Retail Sales – grew a massive 7.2% m-o-m and 25% y-o-y. Needless to say, there were some other factors which led to this massive jump including milder weather in Jan and substantially low prints in Nov and Dec. Yet, 3% is way too high for a Fed trying to conquer inflation. “Retail Control Group” Sales were also up 1.7% (compared to minus 0.7% in December). The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP

18th Jan 2023

Key takeaway: It is worth reading the first 3 sentences of the last month’s key takeaway once again! Monetary policy works with a long and variable lag. Often repeated but so true. 425 basis points of tightening will eventually show up in all – economic growth, employment and consumer spending. Retail Sales fell a substantial 1.1% m-o-m in December 2022. Moreover, even last month’s number was revised down from minus 0.6% to minus 1.0%. Almost every category of the Retail Sales report was down on a m-o-m basis with gasoline stations, furniture and department stores recording the largest declines. It is also interesting to note the “Retail Control Group” Sales were down 0.7% (compared to minus 0.2% in November). The Retail Control Group is all sales, excluding receipts from auto dealers, building-materials retailers, gas stations, office supply stores, mobile homes and tobacco stores. This filtered number is a more precise method of gauging consumer spending, and consumer spending is a large component of U.S. GDP

15th Dec 2022

Key takeaway: Monetary policy works with a long and variable lag. Often repeated but so true. 425 basis points of tightening will eventually show up in both economic growth, employment and consumer spending. After a surprisingly strong October, Retail Sales were back down to a softening trend in November. The value of overall retail sales fell 0.6% in November. But the fall was also broad based with 9 of the 13 retail categories registering a fall. Yet, the fact remains that the US consumer has held up better than expected over the past 9 months – and hence the Fed would like to see a continual easing of demand for more than a few months to be convinced that their monetary tools have been effective in the fight against inflation.      

16th Nov 2022

Key takeaway: After relatively steady declines in US Retail Sales growth, October was an exception when Retail Sales grew at a significant 1.3%. After positive CPI and PPI surprises, the high retail sales number is a dampener for markets since it is not something the Fed would like to see. More importantly, sales grew across all categories including motor vehicles. Supply chains in the auto space are easing a bit and resilient demand can keep the pressure on goods inflation. Furniture, home furnishings, food and beverage all grew at a significant enough rate which raises concern. A recent Fed study had estimated excess savings from the pandemic period to be approximately US$2.5tn and further estimated that three fourths of those savings still exist in consumer’s pockets.      

14th Oct 2022

Key takeaway: US Retail Sales growth is in a steady decline for sure. After a few months of positive surprises, retail sales were down in September (0% m-o-m). But once again, goods consumption is simply not falling at a rate that the Fed would be happy to see. However, the decline in retail sales was across most categories in September. Furniture, building materials, electronics, automobiles, gas stations, sporting goods were all down on a m-o-m basis. While wages have been going up, it is obvious that they have lagged price growth and the slowdown in consumption is bound to occur. The question remains – how soon?     

15th Sep 2022

Key takeaway: Retail Sales growth is in a steady decline for sure. But I dont think it is as swift as the Fed would like it to be. Core retail sales, which strips out auto, fell 0.3% m-o-m in August. But headline retail sales actually grew 0.3% m-o-m. Goods consumption, on a nominal basis, kept increasing. Those huge inventories at Walmart and Target are still being purchased after all! Or may be the Retailers aren’t slashing prices enough! Either ways consumption remaining steely keeps the pressure on inflation. Even gasoline sales did not fall much (down 4.2%) in comparison to the fall in gas prices m-o-m. One last point to note though, was that July reading was revised substantially lower.    

17th Aug 2022

Key takeaway: After first falling in May 2022, US Retail Sales have – for a 2nd month in a row – surprised to the upside. This continues a string of positive data surprises in the US over the last 30 days. Retail Sales, on a nominal basis, were flat year on year. However, Core Retail Sales – which strips out automobiles and parts, were a positive 0.4% on the back of a positive 0.9% last month June. What’s even more interesting is that the large drag on m-o-m Retail Sales was Gasoline which fell 1.8% (remember pump prices fell in July). So, retail sales excluding gasoline have grown fairly well. The 2 final points to remember are – Consumption holding up will not sit well with the aggressive Fed. And finally, it is important to remember that Retail Sales are reported in nominal terms and real consumer spending continues to trend lower (seen from US GDP releases as well).   

15th Jul 2022

Key takeaway: US Retail Sales once again surprised to the upside. Recollect that May was the first in recent months that US Retail Sales had registered a m-o-m decline – indicating wilting consumer demand. June registered a surprisingly strong number. Yet, it is important to remember that Retail Sales are reported in nominal terms and real consumer spending continues to trend lower (seen from US GDP releases as well).   

15th Jun 2022

Key takeaway: Finally a number that shows the wilting consumer. US retail sales had been surprisingly resilient for the previous 4 months. Needless to say, since retail sales numbers are not adjusted for inflation, real consumer spending was lower than what the headline suggested. But today finally sales in nominal terms are down m-o-m. Even April was revised down from 0.9% to 0.7%.   

17th May 2022

Key takeaway: The US Consumer theme holds consistent – month after month ! Similar to previous months, April retail sales report also shows a slowdown in growth rate of consumption. The increase of 0.9% can mostly be attributed to price increases and not general consumption increase. Nonetheless, the report once again shows that consumers are still resilient. This has been the most important data point supporting the “no immediate recession case” but also means the Fed’s job keeps getting harder! 

14th Apr 2022

Key takeaway: Similar to last month, March retail sales report also shows a slowdown in growth rate of consumption. The increase of 0.5% can mostly be attributed to price increases and not general consumption increase. Nonetheless the report shows that consumers are still resilient and Q1 numbers have held up quite well (Feb retail sales numbers were also revised up sharply)

16th Mar 2022

Key takeaway: US Retail Sales slowed down quite a bit in Feb 2022. Still 0.3% m-o-m growth is not bad and conveys the message that the US consumer is healthy and still has substantial disposable income / savings. Note that January 22 Retail Sales increase was also revised upwards from 3.8% to 4.9%! Based on the 1Q data seen so far, it seems like a decent probability that 1Q GDP growth will look good and consequently the earnings results of companies will outperform as well. But it is imperative to keep track of any slowdown in consumption. 

16th Feb 2022

Key takeaway: 

  • The Advance Monthly Retail Trade Survey (MARTS) provides an early indication of sales of retail and food service companies
  • Frequency: Monthly since 1953; Reported data are for activity taking place during the previous month. Forms are mailed 5 working days before the end of the reporting month and responses are due 2 working days after the reporting month. Smaller and medium sized retailers participate in the survey for about two years and then are replaced with new firms.
  • Advance Monthly Retail Sales reports are released about 9 working days after the close of the reference month
  • US Retail Sales grew 3.8% in Jan 2022against an expectation of 2%
  • Key to note that Retail Sales are not stripped for the inflation effect. In simple words, the increase in dollar value of retail sales can be substantially attributed to the increased in prices. Sales volume might not have improved substantially.
  • Data on inflation adjusted personal spending comes out as a part of the Personal Income and Outlays Data released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis
  • Nonetheless, the large January 2021 retail sales number also means that Q1 GDP will likely receive a strong boost!

The Advance Monthly Retail Trade Survey provides an early indication of sales of retail and food service companies. It is key to note that Retail Sales are not stripped for the inflation effect. In other words, the increase in dollar value of retail sales can also be substantially attributed to the increased in prices.

Census.gov