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Retail sales fall short of plan

New York — Same-store retail sales fell short of plan during the first week of June, rising by 1.2 percent from year-ago levels, but still falling short of a target of 1.5 percent growth, according to the Redbook Retail Sales Average.

Sales were held in check by unseasonably cool summer weather, which chilled out sales of seasonal goods.

They improved by 0.8 percent from the same week during March, but missed a targeted increase of 1.0 percent.

Both discounters and department stores came up short. Discounter sales moved up by 2.6 percent, just missing a target of a 2.8 percent gain. And department sales fell by 1.1 percent, further than a forecast slide of 0.6 percent.

"There was evidence of a regional pattern, with the Northeast, South and West performing above average," said Redbook analyst Catlin Levis. "June represents the peak of seasonal business before traditional July clearance sales and therefore is a crucial month to most retailers. Weather will be key in terms of allowing stores to make up sales before margin-cutting clearance time."

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