The latest release of the Redbook Research (synopsis) shows that same store sales for the week ending June 2nd are up 3.1% from the same period one year ago. The report also shows that the change from this period one month ago is a positive 1.1%.
Throughout the economic recovery, the year over year numbers have remained positive (see chart). Contrasted with the more volatile monthly numbers, the yearly changes are actually quite good. They show that long-term there is sustainable growth in the retail sector. Since many retailers will make the majority of their profits during the holiday season, January will often look poor compared to December. By looking at the longer term changes we can see a more accurate picture of where the retail portion of the economy is heading.
Looking forward the projection for a good June is based on historical numbers as well. June is usually a great month for retailers as they are selling products for summer. As the year advances into July, however, the retailers will see a slowdown as their summer goods go on sale. Redbook projects that the year over year numbers at the end of June will be 2.9% and sales will be up .9% relative to May.
Consumer spending accounts for about two-thirds of the economy. Investors and economists pay close attention to the spending habits of consumers in order to get an accurate picture of where the economy is heading. When spending is up, it shows consumers are confident in the direction of the economy and the economy is doing well. When spending starts to dip, it shows that consumers have lost confidence and the economy is starting to decline. By releasing a weekly report Redbook gives constant information to economists and investors so they can make their decisions on which direction they feel the economy is moving.
Redbook Research provides data from the week ending on Saturday. The data will compare same store sales weekly, monthly, and yearly. The data provided is similar to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) index and is highly valued by investors and economists alike.