WASHINGTON–Sales by U.S. retailers totaled $373.1 billion in October, up 1.2 percent over September and registering the fourth consecutive month of sales growth.
The total was also 7.3 percent ahead of October 2009 sales figures. The star performer among the retail channels was the auto sector, whose sales jumped 5 percent month over month. Among retailers of home goods, however, the October picture was less rosy. Sales at furniture and home-furnishings stores slipped 0.7 percent from September. While sales at general merchandise stores increased 0.2 percent, sales at department stores (excluding leased departments) fell 0.7 percent.
Regarding retail overall, Matthew Shay, president and chief executive officer of the National Retail Federation, said, “This continued momentum is good news for the industry, especially with Black Friday and Cyber Monday quickly approaching.”
NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz added, “October’s results are a clear indicator that the economy and consumer spending continue to show marked improvement, even though we expect consumers to proceed with caution.”