Top Movers

'Robust' increase in March US retail sales

By Alexander Bueso

Date: Thursday 18 Apr 2019

'Robust' increase in March US retail sales

(Sharecast News) - The American consumer recovered the spring in his step last month, with retail sales rising at their fastest clip since September 2017 as they splashed out on cars and at gasoline stations in particular.
According to the Department of Commerce, US retail sales volumes jumped at a 1.6% month-on-month pace in March to reach $514.1bn.

Economists had penciled-in an increase of just 0.8%.

Excluding motor vehicles and parts meanwhile, sales rose by 1.2% (consensus: 0.7%).

In comparison to the previous month, the biggest increases were seen in sales of motor vehicles and parts which rose by 3.1%, while those at gasoline stations increased by 3.5%.

Meanwhile, sales at furniture stores grew by 1.7%, those of clothing and accessories by 2.0% and those at food and beverage stores by 1.0%.

In terms of quarterly rates of change on the other hand, retail sales volumes edged up by just 0.1% over the first quarter, but were 2.9% higher versus a year ago.

The so-called 'control group' of retail sales, which excludes sales on gasoline stations, food services and drinking places, building materials and automobiles, meanwhile were up by a "robust" 1.0% quarter-on-quarter, Mickey Levy at Berenberg Capital Markets pointed out.

That, the economist said, took the quarterly annualised pace of sales from 0.7% over the last three months of 2018 to 2.6%.

"This bounce is very encouraging and supports our standing expectation that solid fundamentals will support solid spending gains. March's strong sales raise the starting point for consumption in Q2," Levy said.

"[...] We maintain that the weakness in retail sales between December-February reflected a confluence of unusual factors - heightened financial market volatility, government shutdown, and inclement weather - and that consumer fundamentals point to sustained healthier consumer spending. Amid soft industrial production, we expect consumption to drive GDP growth in the 2.0-2.5% range for the remainder of 2019."

Special promo:
Trading the Forex Market? Visit to get advanced infomation about currencies and the Foreign Exchange Market.


Email this article to a friend

or share it with one of these popular networks:

Top of Page