Retail Sales Rise - Tops Expectations

September 16, 2021

The U.S. Census Bureau announced the following advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for August 2021:

Wall Street was expecting retail sales to decline 0.8%. Excluding autos, the market was looking for sales to register 0.1% gain.

Advance Estimates of U.S. Retail and Food Services

Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for August 2021, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $618.7 billion, an increase of 0.7 percent (0.5 percent) from the previous month, and 15.1 percent (0.7 percent) above August 2020.

Total sales for the June 2021 through August 2021 period were up 16.3 percent (0.5 percent) from the same period a year ago. The June 2021 to July 2021 percent change was revised from down 1.1 percent ( 0.5 percent) to down 1.8 percent (0.2 percent).

Retail trade sales were up 0.8 percent (0.5 percent) from July 2021, and up 13.1 percent (0.7 percent) above last year. Clothing and clothing accessories stores were up 38.8 percent (3.3 percent) from August 2020, while gasoline stations were up 35.7 percent (1.6 percent) from last year.

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