The Problem With That "Strong" Retail Sales Number

Headline retail sales growth of 1.2% was well ahead of expectations, but the market isn’t wildly jazzed on the news.

The problem is that so much of it came from autos, and ex-autos was not so hot.

Here’s a look from the Census Department. Note that the ex-auto number (the blank rectangle) shows lower growth than both in September and August.

chart

As for some specific areas, some key things like furniture and electronics were slightly down from last year.

Get the whole data here.

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