October Retail Sales Show Mixed Signals Before Holiday SeasonNovember 17, 09
Apparel, sporting goods, books, music and personal care are some of the retail sectors in the U.S. gaining strength while others still lagged amid the upcoming holiday season, according to a November 16 report released by the National Retail Federation (NRF).
The brightest areas were clothing and clothing accessories stores, which saw strong gains with sales increasing 0.4 percent seasonally adjusted from the previous month and 3.6 percent unadjusted year-over-year. Health and personal care stores, which reported a sales gain of 0.5 percent seasonally adjusted from the previous month and an increase of 3.8 percent unadjusted from October 2008, also showed promise.
Housing-related categories, such as furniture and home improvement, reported declines.
Furniture and home furnishing stores were down 0.8 percent seasonally adjusted for the month-to-month and down 7.6 year-over-year. Similar areas in decline included stores selling building material, garden equipment and supplies, which dipped 2.4 percent from September and dropped 16.6 percent from same period a year ago.
The NRF, the world's largest retail trade association, forecast a holiday sales decline of 1.0 percent for the months of November and December.