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Sales slackened in May’s second week

Second  week of May year-over-year % change

Week ended 5/9 5/16 5/23 5/30 Month Target
*Including chain stores and traditional department stores
Source: Johnson Redbook Index
Department stores* -6.9  -7.7 -7.4 -7.1
Discounters  4.8 4.3   4.5  4.6
Redbook Index 0.3 -0.3 0.0 0.2




New York – Comps slackened during the second week of May, the Johnson Redbook reported today.

The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index declined 0.3% for the week ended May 16. The previous week the Index had gained 0.3%.

Once again, department stores saw a worsening performance, with year-over-year comp store sales falling 7.7% after dropping 6.9% in the first week of the month. Volume slowed at discounters as well, with comps up 4.3% year-over-year after boosting comps 4.8% the prior week. Food and household goods drove sales at discount, according to Rebook analyst Catlin Levis.

For the month-to-date, comps were flat compared to the same period last year.

Month-to-month comps slid back 0.2%. Cooler and stormy weather in many regions suppressed seasonal business, said Levis.

 “[S]ome retailers said the pace of sales was uneven, slowing down in the middle of the week but picking up and finishing into the weekend. Retailers noticed an increase in demand after May 15, when shoppers received mid-month paychecks,” said Levis. “Retailers are hopeful that sales will strengthen over the Memorial Day weekend.”

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