Signals are crossed for ICSC-Goldman's report for the January 5 week. The week-to-week indication plunged an unexplained 4.2 percent while the year-on-year rate -- the rate that offers the more meaningful signal -- surged 1.3 percentage points to plus 4.0 percent. Plus 4.0 percent is a very strong yearly rate for same-store sales that hasn't been exceeded in this report since way back in May! The report describes the pace of sales as "solid and strong" and believes that growth in the retail sector is at its most sustainable state of the recovery.
Week-to-week indications can often be volatile due to calendar and special effects which must be the case for this report where the weekly rate should be thrown out. Redbook, which offers its own special month-to-month comparison, will be posted later this morning at 8:55 a.m. ET.
This weekly measure of comparable store sales at major retail chains, published by the International Council of Shopping Centers, is related to the general merchandise portion of retail sales. It accounts for roughly 10 percent of total retail sales.
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