Retail momentum continues into the summer as June sales rise by almost 5%

Retail sales rose by 4.4% in June compared to the same month in 2017.

The three-month moving average was also up 4.4 percent over the same period a year ago, matching the top end of National Retail Federation’s forecast.

The June result, which excludes automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants, builds on a strong May, which was up 1% up on April and 6.1% higher than a year ago.

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The National Retail Federation have said that the data is a positive sign despite the ongoing trade war with China and other countries.

NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said: “This is a healthy retail sales report and consistent with underlying economic momentum that has fueled a steady run of retail sales increases. The big question is whether households can continue this spending pace, which is helping drive the current economic cycle. We think they can, but the big risk to the outlook is the trade war, which could raise prices while reducing consumer confidence and household buying power.”

NRF’s numbers are based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau, which said overall June sales, including automobiles, gasoline and restaurants were up 0.5% seasonally adjusted from May and up 6.6% year-over-year.

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