This morning the Commerce Department announced retail sales rose 0.4% in July. However, clothing store sales fell 0.7%. That’s not a good thermometer reading from under the armpit of the US consumer.
Digging into the weeds, here are some notable data points from large retailers which announced earnings this week:
- This morning JC Penny (NYSE: JCP) said sales dropped 0.1% and they lowered their forecast for the year.
- This morning Dillard’s (NYSE: DDS) reported revenue fell 2.7 percent and same-store sales were flat.
- Yesterday Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) said customers are spending less per visit although revenues rose a healthy 8%.
- Yesterday Nordstrom’s (NYSE: JWN) reported quarterly same-store sales grew 8.4%, but on the back of big sales events.
- Wednesday Macy’s (NYSE: M) said same-store sales rose a nice 5.2%.
As the back-to-school season moves into high gear, we hope consumers were saving more in July to fulfill their late summer wish lists. If not, it will feel like a steep hike to the holiday season.
Disclosure: No positions.