2017 Economic Calendar
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Retail Sales  
Released On 12/14/2017 8:30:00 AM For Nov, 2017
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Retail Sales - M/M change0.2 %0.5 %0.3 %0.2 % to 0.5 %0.8 %
Retail Sales less autos - M/M change0.1 %0.4 %0.7 %0.5 % to 0.9 %1.0 %
Less Autos & Gas - M/M Change0.3 %0.4 %0.4 %0.2 % to 0.6 %0.8 %
Control Group – M/M change0.3 %0.4 %0.4 %0.1 % to 0.6 %0.8 %

Highlights
The consumer is in gear for the holidays as a very strong retail sales report lifts the outlook for fourth-quarter consumer spending. Retail sales surged 0.8 percent in November which is far beyond expectations and is 3 tenths over Econoday's high estimate. The data include a strong upward revision to October which now stands at a 0.5 percent gain vs an initial increase of 0.2 percent.

November's strength comes despite a 0.2 percent decline in auto sales excluding which sales rose a full 1.0 percent. Core readings underscore all the strength: up 0.8 percent for both ex-auto ex-gas and for the control group.

Most major components outside of autos show gains including a standout 2.5 percent jump in nonstore sales which speaks to unusual strength in e-commerce. Electronics & appliances appear to be early holiday favorites with these stores reporting a 2.1 percent jump on top of a 1.2 percent rise in October. Price discounting for apparel that was evident in yesterday's consumer price report did not hold down totals for clothing stores which gained 0.7 percent for a second straight month. Restaurants also show strength, up 0.7 percent following October's 0.4 percent rise.

Consumer spending proved a little soft in the third-quarter GDP report at only 2.3 percent annualized growth but today's report, including the revision, is certain to lift the outlook for fourth-quarter GDP. And it may even encourage talk that the economy, fed by unusual strength in the labor market, could be at the risk of overheating.

Recent History Of This Indicator
After jumping on hurricane-driven gains for autos and gas, retail sales settled back to earth in October with only a 0.2 percent gain and mostly moderate details throughout. For November, unit auto sales slowed which points to trouble for the motor vehicle component. Special interest will be paid to department store and nonstore data to measure the success of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Retail sales in November are expected to rise 0.3 percent with ex-auto sales much higher at 0.7 percent. Two core readings -- less auto & gas and control group sales -- are both expected to post solid increases of 0.4 percent.

Definition
Retail sales measure the total receipts at stores that sell merchandise and related services to final consumers. Sales are by retail and food services stores. Data are collected from the Monthly Retail Trade Survey conducted by the U.S. Bureau of the Census. Essentially, retail sales cover the durables and nondurables portions of consumer spending. Consumer spending typically accounts for about two-thirds of GDP and is therefore a key element in economic growth.  Why Investors Care
 
[Chart]
Nearly 75 percent of the time, changes in monthly retail sales are between +1 percent and -1 percent. However, there are many months in which the monthly change falls outside that range. Most of the time, excessive increases or decreases are due to higher/lower spending on motor vehicle sales. Year-over-year changes in retail sales can be volatile as well, but tend to be smoother than monthly changes.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
 
 

2017 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/132/153/154/145/126/147/148/159/1510/1311/1512/14
Release For: DecJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNov
 


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