US Retail Sales Rise Unexpectedly by 1 percent

Higher food and energy prices pushed retail sales over a 1.0% gain beating analysts expectations of a drop of 0.8%. Last month’s data was revised further downward 2.7% vs the revision of 3.0%. Some economist suggested this was due to large New Year’s discounts. The market was not swayed by the sales figure as other economic indicators continue to point to a deeper recession.

Definition from FXPedia:

Retail Sales

Provides feedback on consumer spending and is one of the first sales reports available each month. Only tracks spending on consumer goods exclusively and does not include expenditures on services such as health care and education. An increase in retails sales has a positive effect on the currency as it shows growth in the country’s economy.

The Retail Sales report is published without adjusting for inflation, so to get a true measure of real change in retail spending, you must adjust accordingly. It is not uncommon for the sales report to undergo significant revisions even after it is released as compiling accurate and complete retail sales data can be very difficult.

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza