Breaking News
0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

Retail Sales Stagnate in April, But Offset by Upward Revision to March Data

Economic IndicatorsMay 14, 2021 13:49
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
© Reuters.

By Geoffrey Smith 

Investing.com -- Fears of the U.S. economy running hot receded on Friday after new data showed a slowdown in consumer spending in April.

Retail sales were flat on the month, falling short of expectations of a 1% gain. However, the monthly gain for March was revised up by a full percentage point to 10.7%., leaving aggregate spending roughly where economists expected it to be over the two months.

Core retail sales fell 0.8% on the month, rather than rising 0.7% as expected. Here too, the March figure was revised upward to a gain of 9.0% from an initial estimate of 8.4%.

The figures once again testified to idiosyncracies in consumer spending patterns as the economy emerges slowly and unevenly from the Covid-19 pandemic: sales at auto dealerships rose 3.1% on the month, corroborating the robust demand for cars that had also been evident in the sharp rise in prices for vehicles in April's inflation report earlier in the week.

By contrast, sales of apparel fell 5.1% and sales at hobby and sporting stores fell 3.6% on the month, having surged in March. 

March's data had been skewed by the effect of stimulus checks arriving at households across the country which, coupled with the start of economic reopening, had resulted in an explosion in overall spending.

"It was inevitable that there would be some declines in spending in April given that the vast majority of the $1,400 checks had already been paid out the previous month, but the details show sales in most categories reversing only part of their earlier surge," said Andrew Hunter, senior U.S. economist with Capital Economics in a note to clients."

Hunter noted that spending on food and drink services rose 3% on the month, after surging 13.5% in March as bars and restaurants across the country reopened in growing numbers. It's now only 2% below its pre-pandemic peak, he argued.

James Knightley. chief international economist with ING, said via Twitter that the staged reopening of the economy also meant that spending was draining away from goods to services. 

"Re-opening means increased options for spending money, meaning a movement away from “things” to “experiences” that aren’t measured within retail sales," Knightley said.

 

Retail Sales Stagnate in April, But Offset by Upward Revision to March Data
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind: 

  • Enrich the conversation
  • Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed.
  • Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically.
  •  Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and links within a comment will be removed
  • Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user.
  • Don’t Monopolize the Conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also believe strongly in giving everyone a chance to air their thoughts. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email