WASHINGTON–Providing some indication that consumers are feeling better about shopping, U.S. retail sales in July rose 0.5 percent over June and 8.5 percent over July of last year, totaling $390.4 billion on an adjusted basis.
According to this morning’s report on retail sales from the U.S. Census Bureau, sales at furniture and home furnishings stores were 0.5 percent ahead of the prior month and up 1.1 percent over July 2010. General-merchandise store sales were flat month to month and rose 3.7 percent year over year. At department stores (excluding leased departments), sales fell 0.8 percent from June to July, but increased 0.4 percent year over year.
Among other, non-home related channels, gasoline stations posted a year-over-year increase of 23.6 percent, while auto dealers checked in with an increase of 8.3 percent from July of last year.
Commenting on today’s numbers, Matthew Shay, president and CEO of the National Retail Federation, said, “Consumers are showing that they still have spending power, and with a renewed focus on job creation, we are optimistic this recovery can still get back on track.”