Redbook says the big Eastcoast snowstorm didn't hold back shoppers from chasing bargains and redeeming gift cards. Year-on-year same-store sales rose 3.5 percent in the January 1 week, below the prior week but right in line with trend and pointing to a very positive 0.4 percent gain vs November. This latter reading points to a solid gain for the government's December ex-auto ex-gas category in what would be substantial evidence of consumer strength.
A weekly measure of comparable store sales at chain stores, discounters, and department stores. It is a less consistent indicator of retail sales than the weekly ICSC-Goldman index. It is also calculated differently than other indicators. For instance, figures for the first week of the month are compared with the average for the entire previous month. When two weeks are available, then these are compared with the average for the previous month, and so on through the month. It might be more useful to compare year-over-year figures since these are indeed compared to the comparable week a year ago. This index is correlated with the general merchandise portion of retail sales covering about 10 percent of total retail sales.
Why Investors Care