So Holiday Sales Weren’t So Good After All

The Fed came out with its numbers yesterday, and it turns out that holiday retail sales in December were disappointing, falling 0.3% from November. But the good news is that they rose 5.4% from December 2008.

Hit the hardest were businesses termed as “electronics and appliance” stores, which fell 2.6% month over month, while “general merchandise stores” decreased 0.8%. Apparel dropped 0.6%.

On a brighter note, “sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores” rose 1.6%, and “furniture and home furnishings stores” inched up 0.3%. Department stores were flat.

As this Washington Post article notes, in its December report, the Commerce Department revised November’s increase over October from 1.3% to 1.8%, so that contributed to last month’s lag.

In summary, it looks like sales were better from last year, but still far from “good.” Are we seeing a slow recovery, no recovery, or are these figures not very good indicators of what’s really happening in the industry?

ALSO: Zale’s Woes Are a Contrast to a Shining Tiffany.

3 Responses to “So Holiday Sales Weren’t So Good After All”

  1. 1 alan barocas January 15, 2010 at 8:22 am

    Is anyone really surprised that December retail sales were off. unlike 2008 when most were caught by surprise and reacted drastically to the sunami that hit our economic landscape,2009 was a year in which retailers concentrated on cap spend, inventory control and balance sheet. Concern for comp sales was replaced by earnings(finally). why would December be any different. What we were experiencing however were shopping center pundits who thought that the more you talked about something more likely it would happen. Not the case and the results for December were proof of that. Also, I think comparison to 2008 as a bright spot is also a misinterpetaion of progress. if we really want to compare, we should look at December of 2007 as the guideline for progress.

  2. 2 Peggy Israel January 15, 2010 at 10:07 am

    Something else to consider — retailers controlled their inventory very tightly this year and sold through what they had. My friends who are in the business of supplying merchandise to retailers tell me that after two painfully slow/dead years, retailers are ordering from suppliers again. I don’t have numbers here to prove my point, just anecdotal evidence, but the wheels of commerce are starting to turn again.

  3. 3 Dunkin'man January 19, 2010 at 10:22 am

    And i believe we should take out “Auto sales”, which other articles have

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Bookmark and Share


January 2010
« Dec   Feb »

Ian Ritter on Twitter

Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.

RSS’s Top Stories

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.

%d bloggers like this: