Reclaiming Common Sense

Last Year we Had Our Second Consecutive $6 Trillion Retail Sales Year

Non-Seasonally Adjusted Drop in Sales will Be Reported as Record January

The data that is recorded is the non-seasonally adjusted (NSA) Monthly and Annual Retail Trade Survey data, or MARTS data. The data that is reported is the seasonally adjusted (SA) MARTS Data. Some in the media focus on the month to month changes while others examine the current year growth. This column addresses changes in the same month data, the month to month data, the rolling year data and the current year data. This month sales will drop NSA month to month and rise January to January. The seasonally adjusted data is expected to improve month to month and January to January. What was reported this month?

The Non-Seasonally Adjusted was expected to  drop from the Christmas Sales Peak. The month to month non-seasonally adjusted data was expected to drop 18% to 21%. All sectors were expected to  record declines in NSA sales. It was expected that, based on month to month changes, we would record  $471 billion to $490 billion in total sales.

Non-Seasonally Adjusted Retail Sales were recorded at $480 billion. All sectors declined. There were smaller drops this year in Food and Beverage Stores, Clothing and Clothing Accessories, Sporting Goods, Hobbies, Books and Music (SGHBM.) There was s lightly larger drop in Non-Store Retail than was expected. Could this be due to on-line Christmas returns (Non-Store Retail or NSR?)

The NSA MARTS data was expected to improve January to January by at least 3.75% and up to  6%. Last January we had 459.43 billion in total sales. This means that we expected to record $477 billion to $486 billion in total sales. The sectors anticipated to pop the most were Food and Beverage Sales (FBS,) Food and Drinking Places (FDP) Sales, Non-Store Retail (NSR,) and Motor Vehicle and Parts (MVP) sales. Non-store retail should grow 10% to 15% from last January's $58 billion in sales to between $64 billion to $67 billion. The non-seasonally adjusted MARTS should be around $480 billion.

January to January Growth hit 4.58%. There were same month drops in Electronics and Appliance (EAS) Sales, Building Material and Garden Equipment (BMGE) Sales, CAC, and SGHBM. This is probably attributed tot he January Record for NSR. Non-store sales exceeded Food and Drinking Places (FDP) this month.

Seasonally Adjusted sales were expected to grow month to month and January to January. We have had 20 consecutive months, after the revisions last month, where the SA MARTS has eclipsed $500 billion a month. Last month we had $529 billion in total sales. Last January we had $507 billion. It was expected that we will report 0.25% to 0.50% growth month to month  The month to month data means that we should have hit between $530 billion and $532 billion in sales.

Seasonally Adjusted month to month growth hit 0.26%. The largest month to month growth was reported in BMGE, MISC sales, and Furniture and Home Furnishings. Non-Store Retail growth was weak.

The same month data was expected to grow by and 3% to 5% January to January. This meant that we should have reported between $528 and $532 billion in total sales. Expect a record $530 billion. There could be a decline or two in the SA MARTS on a month to month basis. Declines are expected in MVP, Clothing and Accessories (CAC,) and Sporting Goods, Hobbies, Books and Music (SGHBM.) The largest gains are expected in Build Material and Garden Equipment (BMGE,) Miscellaneous sales, and Health and Personal Care (HPC) Sales.

Same month growth was reported at 4.44%. The largest growth January to January were reported in Gasoline Sales (GASS,) Miscellaneous (MISC) sales, NSR, and FDP., followed by Motor Vehicle and Parts (MVP) sales. We had a record $529 billion in sales. This was the 21st straight month with sales reported over $500 billion a month.

It's the Economy.