Consumers begin to eye BTS
August 12, 2008,
New York – The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index rose 1.5% in the first week of August, and was up 1.5% compared to August of last year.
Although sales were slightly below plan during the opening shopping week of the month, shoppers were pursuing summer clearance sales and starting to turn their attention to fresh back-to-school merchandise, according to Redbook analyst Catlin Levis.
“At this point, most stores are in mid-transition between summer clearance and back-to-school,” she said. “The full impact of back-to-school will not be seen until later this month, or early September.”
The discount sector outperformed its 3.9% target for the month by posting a 4.4% sales gain during the month’s first week. Discount volume was driven by consumables, especially food and some back-to-school items, said Levis.
Overall, tax-free holidays in a number of states also boosted volume, she added. Those states were Alabama, District of Columbia, Tennessee and Virginia.
First week of August, year-over-year % change
*Including chain stores and traditional department stores.
Source: Johnson Redbook Index
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