April Showers Dampen Comp Gains

New York — Heavy rains and tornadoes in parts of the country kept shoppers at home and away from the malls, putting a cap on early Easter holiday spending; same-store retail sales, while rising, fell far short of expectations, the Johnson Redbook Index reported.

Retailers said sales fell short and missed their target, rising by 3.3% from year-ago levels, well short of a projected gain of 4.4%. Discounter sales shot up by 5.1% during the week, but not enough to meet the goal of 6.8% growth. Ditto department stores, where sales improved by 0.5%, but missed a target of 0.7%. Measured against the prior month, sales were up 3.1%, beneath the target of a 4.2% rise. Redbook analyst Catlin Levis said heavy rains and tornadoes “disrupted and put the brakes on seasonal business.” But in some regions, “warmer temperatures over the weekend have helped to stimulate sales.”

The unusually strong 3.3% boost in sales during the first week of March, the analyst said, “reflected the transition form the negative to the positive side of the Easter shift. Easter falls three weeks later this year than last, so the expected bulge in sales around the holiday will be accounted for in April, rather than in March. It will make April appear stronger than April last year, and also much stronger than March of this year.”

Johnson Redbook Index
First week of April, year-over-year % change

Week ended 4/8 4/15 4/22 4/29 Month Target
*Including chain stores and traditional department stores
Source: Johnson Redbook Index
Department stores* 0.5 0.5 0.7
Discounters 5.1 5.1 6.8
Redbook Average 3.3 3.3 4.4

Home & Textiles Today Staff | News & Commentary

 Home Textiles Today is the market-leading brand covering the home and textiles markets, offering a comprehensive package of print and online products. Home & Textiles Today provides industry news, product trends and introductions, exclusive industry research, consumer data, store operations solutions, trade show news and much more.

Featured Video

  • Live From New York: Fashion Comes Across the Pond

    Camera Icon More Videos

Subscribe to
Home & Textiles Today eDaily
Receive the news you need to know about the trends in the industry delivered right to your inbox.


HTT Cover October 2017

See the October 2017 issue of Home & Textiles Today. In this issue, we look at the Top 25 Online Retailers.  H&TT's exclusive annual ranking of the biggest online sellers of home textiles finds that while pure play etailers continue to fly, bricks & clicks are digging into omnichannel. See details!