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Retail Sales: Housing Taking Its Toll

December 15, 2022
Bottom Line:   Retail sales declined in November, coming in below expectations as the housing market took its toll on consumption. Sales at building and garden supply stores fell sharply, as did those at home furnishings stores. Online store sales, the largest category outside autos at $109B of the $689B total, fell nearly 1% on the month after a rebound in October. There were negative revisions to most October data, but sales for September and August were revised higher, keeping the three-month annualized rate of core sales over 4%, a deceleration but still historically moderate to robust. Overall, consumers have faced a dual headwind of higher prices and interest rates slowing housing activity. And that is slowly taking a toll on consumption.

Total US Retail Sales FELL -0.58%.
Retail Sales for September were revised down from +0.0159% to -0.167%, while October sales were revised up from +1.27% to +1.31%. Core Retail Sales for October were revised down from +1.19% to +0.796%, while Core Retail Sales for September were revised up from -0.0585% to +0.422%. Core Retail Sales for August were revised up from -0.235% to +0.882%.
  • Ex Auto, Parts & Gas sales FELL -0.21%  
  • Nonstore (Online)  sales FELL -0.94%  
  • Eating & Drinking Places sales ROSE 0.87%  
  • Food & Beverage Stores sales ROSE 0.76%  
  • Gas Stations sales were nearly unchanged,  -0.06%
  • General Merchandise Stores sales were nearly unchanged,  -0.11%
  • Building & Garden Supply sales FELL -2.51%  
  • Health & Personal sales ROSE 0.71%  
  • Clothing Stores sales FELL -0.21% 
Article by Contingent Macro