Oct Retail Sales Seen Pulling Back Sharply On Auto/Gas
October advance retail sales - as ever a volatile series - will provide the latest check on the pulse of the US consumer amid soft payrolls and inflation data for the month. Today's report is estimated to show a contraction of -0.3% M/M, vs +0.7% prior, with sell-side estimates ranging from -0.7% to +0.3%.
- Ex-auto/gas and the GDP-input Control Group are each seeing slowing to +0.2% (+0.6% prior). With an expected ex-auto contraction of -0.2%, the implication is that softer motor vehicle sales and a drop in gasoline prices are seen dragging on the headline figure.
- Additionally, the monthly CPI reading of 0.0% M/M suggests a negative "real" figure (though of course each dataset captures different baskets).
- A few real-time spending indicators show diverging signs for spending in the month: BofA's credit card spending series showed total card spending per household at -0.2% M/M in Oct vs +0.2% prior; the BEA's card transaction tracker shows +0.7% vs -6.0% prior with significant weakness in nonstore retailers, electronics/appliance and furniture stores, with strength in bars/restaurants, sporting goods stores, and general merchandise stores.
Source: Census Bureau, MNI, BBG