Retail sales figures are flat but a deeper dive shows consumer resilience

Jul 16, 2024
Spending in many sectors, like furniture and online shopping, was strong. Falling prices also depressed the top line numbers in some categories.
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Back-to-school shopping season has started really early this year.
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Retail sales figures suggest consumers are pulling back

May 15, 2024
The latest figures, for April, suggest that rising prices, high interest rates and depleted pandemic savings may finally be weighing on spending.
In surveys, consumers report they’re increasingly worn down by inflation, said Morning Consult's Claire Tassin.
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Retail sales climbed to a higher-than-expected 0.7% in March

Apr 15, 2024
Consumers are still spending, but that looks a little different now than it has the past few years.
Spending at nonstore retailers — like Temu or Amazon — rose 2.7% last month.
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The problem of "sameness"

Jan 31, 2024
Why department stores struggle to retain relevancy.
Can you tell whether this photo was taken inside of a JCPenney? A Dillard's? A Macy's?
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Retailers are stuck in a cycle of constant sales

Jan 17, 2024
Once consumers adjust to a 24/7 promotion environment, it hard for companies to stop.
Online shopping has given consumers the ability to compare prices in real time, giving retailers more incentive to offer deals.
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Non-store retail sales grew more than 10% since last November

Dec 14, 2023
$1.2 trillion was spent outside of brick-and-mortar stores this year — much of it online. Here's some of the trends shaping e-commerce spending.
Non-retail sales — mostly online shopping — grew by more than 10% year-over-year, according to the Commerce Department.
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For public good, not for profit.

What counts as "discretionary" spending?

Nov 15, 2023
Shoppers have been pulling back on "discretionary" spending at retailers.
What counts as "discretionary" spending varies from person to person, depending on their spending habits. For example, food is a necessity, but there's a difference between pantry staples and a prepared steak dinner.
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Retail group predicts record holiday spending

Nov 3, 2023
The National Retail Federation predicts at least $957 billion in sales this holiday season. But that might not mean everyone is splurging.
Prices for goods are up nearly 1% from a year ago, according to the latest PCE price index.
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Did retail sales grow because we bought more stuff, or did the stuff get more expensive?

Oct 17, 2023
The way the Census Bureau calculates its retail sales data wasn't an issue until prices started rising a couple years back.
Grocery store spending rose 0.4% in September, according to the Census Bureau.
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