US Retail Sales Rise the Most in 5 Months

US retail trade rose by 0.8 percent from a month earlier in October 2018, following a revised 0.1 percent drop in September and beating market expectations of a 0.5 percent gain. This was the largest increase in retail trade since May.

10 of 13 major retail categories showed month-over-month increases.

Sales at motor vehicle & parts dealers rebounded 1.1 percent in October (vs -0.1 percent in September), likely as residents in areas affected by Florence replaced damaged cars, and those at gasoline stations jumped 3.5 percent (vs -0.4 percent in September) on the back of higher gasoline prices. In addition, spending at building material stores advanced 1 percent (vs 0.1 percent in September) probably boosted by rebuilding efforts in areas devastated by Florence, and receipts at electronics & appliance stores surged 0.7 percent (vs -1.5 percent in September). Sales also rose at: food & beverage stores (0.3 percent vs 0.4 percent); clothing & clothing accessories stores (0.5 percent vs 0.8 percent); hobby, musical instrument and book stores (0.5 percent vs -1.3 percent); general merchandise stores (0.5 percent vs flat reading); miscellaneous store retailers (0.6 percent vs -0.5 percent); online and mail-order retail trade (0.4 percent vs 1.3 percent).

Meanwhile, receipts at furniture & home furniture stores fell 0.3 percent (vs 0.5 percent in September) and those at restaurants and bars dropped 0.2 percent (vs -1.5 percent in September). Spending at health & personal care stores was unchanged last month (vs -0.1 percent in September).

Excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services, retail sales advanced 0.3 percent in October after a downwardly revised 0.3 percent gain in September.

Year-on-year, retail trade grew 4.6 percent in October, compared with a 4.2 percent rise in September.

US Retail Sales Rise the Most in 5 Months

US Census Bureau | Joana Ferreira |
11/15/2018 2:07:25 PM