This year's early Easter gave a boost to retail sales in late March and early April. Redbook's year-on-year same-store sales rate came in at plus 4.1 percent in the April 7 week vs an outsized rate of plus 4.6 percent in the prior week. Aside from the prior week, the latest week's rate is the highest so far this year. Redbook offers a month-to-month reading which is up a strong 0.8 percent to offer an early indication of strength for April retail sales. The government's retail sales report for March will be posted next week on Monday morning.
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