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Don’t Be Fooled by the Retail Numbers—Just Be Selective

162 views  2013-04-17 04:21   Tagsconsumer  interest  jobs  retail  sector 

When interest rates are as low as they are and consumers begin to hold back on their spending, you have to wonder about the prospects for the retail sector going forward.

With the higher taxes on those earning over $400,000 and other tax increases as a result of the sequestration, we may be seeing some evidence of reduced spending.

The U.S. Department of Commerce said retail sales in March contracted by 0.4% on both a headline and an ex-auto basis, which was below the Briefing.com estimates of flat sales and 0.3%, respectively. This was the second decline in retail sales in the last three months.

While it may be premature to assume a new downtrend for retail sales, I wonder if the decline in take-home pay for some Americans has resulted in less consumer spending.

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