United States: Retail sales rebound in August
Retail sales grew 0.7% in month-on-month seasonally-adjusted terms in August, which contrasted July’s 1.8% decrease. Looking at the details of the release, August’s pick up was broad-based. Food and beverages and general merchandise stores output gained steam, while motor vehicle and parts dealers production contracted at a softer rate. Lastly, non-store retailer sales rose at a stronger rate, while gasoline stations sales moderated.
On an annual basis, retail sales rose 15.1% in August, which matched July’s expansion. Meanwhile, the trend improved significantly, with the annual average growth of retail sales coming in at plus 15.3% in August, up from July’s 14.3% reading.
Commenting on August’s print, Francis Généreux, a senior economist at Desjardins, stated:
“The growth in retail sales in August, particularly if we exclude motor vehicles, is encouraging and suggests the new wave of the pandemic is not having a major impact on the economy. This could further reassure Federal Reserve officials.”