US retail trade jumped 0.7 percent from a month earlier in July 2019, following a revised 0.3 percent increase in June and easily beating market expectations of 0.3 percent, boosted by purchases of a variety of goods.
10 of 13 major retail categories showed month-over-month increases.
Receipts at service stations rose 1.8 percent (vs -2.3 percent in June) reflecting higher gasoline prices; and those at furniture stores advanced 0.3 percent (vs -0.4 percent in June). In addition, sales at building material stores gained 0.2 percent, the same pace as in June; and those at clothing stores increased 0.8 percent, compared to a 0.1 percent fall in the previous month. Online and mail-order retail sales jumped 2.8 percent, the most in six months, likely boosted by Amazon.com Inc's Prime Day; and receipts at restaurants and bars accelerated 1.1 percent (vs 0.7 percent in June). Sales also rose at: electronics & appliance stores (0.9 percent vs -0.7 percent); food & beverage stores (0.6 percent vs 0.8 percent); general merchandise stores (0.6 percent vs 0.1 percent); and miscellaneous store retailers (0.3 percent vs -0.4 percent).
On the other hand, auto sales fell 0.6 percent in July (vs 0.3 percent in June) and spending at hobby, musical instrument and book stores declined 1.1 percent (vs 0.6 percent in June). Receipts at health & personal care stores also dropped 0.2 percent, compared to a 0.6 percent gain in June.
Excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services, retail sales climbed 1 percent last month after a 0.7 percent advance in June. These so-called core retail sales correspond most closely with the consumer spending component of GDP.
Year-on-year, retail sales grew 3.4 percent, little-changed from 3.3 percent in the previous month.
8/15/2019 1:01:15 PM