Retail Sales Up 1.7% in October, 16.3% YoY

The Census Bureau's Advance Retail Sales Report for October was released this morning. Headline sales came in at 1.70% month-over-month to two decimals and was above the forecast of 1.2%. Core sales (ex Autos) came in at 1.68% MoM.

Here is the introduction from today's report:

Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for October 2021, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $638.2 billion, an increase of 1.7 percent (±0.5 percent) from the previous month, and 16.3 percent (±0.9 percent) above October 2020. Total sales for the August 2021 through October 2021 period were up 15.4 percent (±0.7 percent) from the same period a year ago. The August 2021 to September 2021 percent change was revised from up 0.7 percent (±0.5 percent) to up 0.8 percent (±0.2 percent).

Retail trade sales were up 1.9 percent (±0.4 percent) from September 2021, and up 14.8 percent (±0.7 percent) above last year. Gasoline stations were up 46.8 percent (±1.6 percent) from October 2020, while food services and drinking places were up 29.3 percent (±3.9 percent) from last year. [view full report]

The chart below is a log-scale snapshot of retail sales since the early 1990s. The two exponential regressions through the data help us to evaluate the long-term trend of this key economic indicator.