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--Retail Sales Ex. Motor Vehicle Flat; Ex. Mtr Veh and Gas +0.1%
By Alexandra Kelley
WASHINGTON (MNI) - The value of retail sales rose 0.4% in August,
well above the 0.2% gain expected by markets. This followed a
upwardly revised 0.8% in the previous month, according to data
released Friday by the Commerce Department.
Excluding motor vehicles, retail sales saw no change after turning
in 1.0% in July. The year over year rate for retail sales excluding
motor vehicle, however, increased by 3.5%. Control group sales excluding
motor vehicle, gasoline station, and building material sales) was flat
Here are some of the key takeaways from the data:
- Gasoline station sales declined by 0.9% and motor vehicle sales
rose, accelerating by 1.8%. Outside of those two more volatile
categories, retail trade sales were still up by 0.6%.
- Nonstore retailers, referring to digital stores and mail-order
purchases, jumped by 1.6% in August, suggesting strong e-commerce
- Building material and garden equipment sales also increased,
moving to 1.4% growth from a 1.0% increase in July. This jump speaks to
the unmet demand for housing in the U.S. market and implies more
construction in future months.
- Food services & drinking places reported a sizeable decline of
1.2% in August as opposed to the steady 0.6% growth seen in July.
** MNI Washington Bureau: 202-371-2121 **