Retail Sales Up 0.3% in August

The Census Bureau's Advance Retail Sales Report for August was released this week. Headline sales came in at 0.29% month-over-month to two decimals and was above the forecast of 0.2%. Core sales (ex Autos) came in at -0.26% MoM.

Here is the introduction from today's report:

Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for August 2022, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $683.3 billion, an increase of 0.3 percent (±0.5 percent)* from the previous month, and 9.1 percent (±0.7 percent) above August 2021. Total sales for the June 2022 through August 2022 period were up 9.3 percent (±0.5 percent) from the same period a year ago. The June 2022 to July 2022 percent change was revised from virtually unchanged (±0.5 percent)* to down 0.4 percent (±0.2 percent).

Retail trade sales were up 0.2 percent (±0.4 percent)* from July 2022, and up 8.9 percent (±0.7 percent) above last year. Gasoline stations were up 29.3 percent (±1.6 percent) from August 2021, while nonstore retailers were up 11.2 percent (±1.2 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.