Aggressive promotions boosted sales in the January 4 week, according to Redbook's same-store sales index which is up a very solid 4.1 percent vs a year ago. Redbook reports significant upside surprises at some department stores where promotions this time of year are often heavy. The report notes that December as a whole was more promotional than planned which boosted the top line but which points to a squeeze for the bottom line. Redbook is trending significantly higher than ICSC-Goldman, though the slopes for both are on the rise. Watch for chain-store reports on Thursday for more information on holiday spending.
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