Retail Sales Hitting Stride

Picking up the pace and starting to sprint ahead moving into the new year, total U.S. retail sales climbed 0.5 percent during February, improving on a 0.3 percent increase recorded the month before, when post-holiday sales kicked into gear.

In a notably strong performance, improving sales were recorded across the board, with almost every major category gaining. Indeed, of 12 key merchandise channels tracked by the U.S. Department of Commerce, 10 pushed ahead in February, ranging from car dealers to restaurants and bars. One (non-store retailing was flat) and only one declined — building materials and garden supplies — slipping 1.3 percent.

Excluding building supplies, home categories were strong performers, with electronics and appliances jumping 1.6 percent, improving on a 2 percent gain in January. Furniture and home furnishings increased 0.7 percent, building on a January gain of 0.9 percent.

The highly volatile measure of car sales — which moves in seasonal swings and fluctuates with price cuts and interest rate promotions — gained 0.7 percent, recovering from a steep 2.1 percent drop in January.

by channel

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce
Electronics & appliances 1.6%
Restaurants & bars 1.2
Clothing & accessories 1.1
Gas stations 0.9
Car dealers 0.7
Furniture & home furnishings 0.7
Department stores 0.5
Health & personal care 0.3
Grocery stores 0.2
Sporting goods, books, music 0.1
Non-store retailers 0.0
Building mat./garden supplies -1.3

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.

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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!