Retail Sales Fall in August
Sales at U.S. retailers dropped more than forecast in August, indicating a pause in recent consumer-spending strength that has carried the economy. Purchases declined 0.3 percent from July, the first decline in retail sales in five months, after a revised 0.1 percent advance in the previous month, Commerce Department figures showed Thursday. The median projection of economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a 0.1 percent decline.
Total Retail's Take: This isn't exactly the type of news that retailers were looking for as they prepare for the critical fourth quarter. With the presidential election on the horizon — and it's likely negative influence on consumer spending — and now this news of declining sales, should retailers be bracing for a difficult holiday season? Best to get to work now preparing your businesses to win over what appears may be a cautious consumer.