SOURCE: Michigan Retailers Association

Michigan Retailers Association

July 27, 2016 08:38 ET

Retail Sales Slow in June but Remain Positive, According to MRA

LANSING, MI--(Marketwired - July 27, 2016) - Michigan retail sales slowed in June from their strong spring showing but remained positive for the fifth consecutive month, according to the Michigan Retail Index, a joint project of Michigan Retailers Association (MRA) and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

"Consumers continue to demonstrate their willingness to spend on themselves and their homes and push the economy forward," said MRA President and CEO James P. Hallan. "Most retailers expect their sales to continue growing throughout the summer, especially because of declining unemployment and gasoline prices."

Retail sales increased across the U.S. Excluding autos and gasoline, sales climbed 0.7 percent in June, according to the U.S. Commerce Department.

The June Michigan Retail Index survey found 51 percent of Michigan retailers increased sales over the same month last year, while 34 percent recorded declines and 15 percent reported no change. The results create a seasonally adjusted performance index of 53.9, down from 65.1 in May. A year ago June the performance index stood at 63.9.

The 100-point index gauges the performance of the state's overall retail industry, based on monthly surveys conducted by MRA and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago's Detroit branch. Index values above 50 generally indicate positive activity; the higher the number, the stronger the activity.

Looking forward, 61 percent of retailers expect sales during July-September to increase over the same period last year, while 11 percent project a decrease and 28 percent no change. That puts the seasonally adjusted outlook index at 71.6, down from 74.6 in May. A year ago June, the outlook index stood at 74.4.

Note: William Strauss, senior economist and economic advisor with the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, can be reached at 312.322.8151.

Michigan Retail Index
June 2016 results
Index figures dating to July 1994 are available at http://www.retailers.com/mra/news/michigan-retail-index.html

June Performance
Retailers reporting increased, decreased or unchanged sales, inventory, prices, promotions and hiring compared to the same month a year ago
(numbers in parentheses indicate May results)

  % Increased % Decreased % No Change Index* Responses
Sales 51 (54) 34 (22) 15 (24) 53.9 (65.1) 76 (63)
Inventory 43 (53) 17 (14) 40 (33) 59.5 (61.8) 76 (63)
Prices 14 (7) 8 (6) 78 (87) 52.0 (47.9) 76 (63)
Promotions 26 (31) 1 (3) 73 (66) 61.6 (63.0) 76 (62)
Hiring 20 (21) 6 (8) 74 (71) 54.7 (55.3) 76 (62)

Outlook for Next 3 Months
Retailers expecting increased, decreased or unchanged sales, inventory, prices, promotions and hiring compared to the same period a year ago
(numbers in parentheses indicate May results)

  % Increased % Decreased % No Change Index* Responses
Sales 61 (67) 11 (10) 28 (23) 71.6 (74.6) 75 (61)
Inventory 33 (40) 30 (19) 37 (41) 48.7 (57.9) 76 (63)
Prices 8 (16) 4 (3) 88 (81) 51.8 (56.5) 75 (63)
Promotions 34 (37) 3 (3) 63 (60) 68.2 (67.1) 75 (62)
Hiring 17 (18) 7 (6) 76 (76) 54.0 (54.7) 76 (63)

June Sales Performance & Outlook for Next 3 Months, by Region
(the first number indicates sales performance for the month; the number in parentheses indicates outlook for the next three months)

 % Increased% Decreased% No Change
North50 ( 56)44 (19)6 ( 25)
West38 ( 54)33 (13)29 ( 33)
Central37 ( 75)50 ( 0)13 ( 25)
East33 ( 67)67 ( 0)0 ( 33)
Southeast74 ( 68)17 ( 5)9 ( 27)

*Seasonally adjusted diffusion index. A diffusion index, which is the sum of the percent of respondents indicating increase and half the percent indicating no change, is calculated and then seasonally adjusted using the U.S. Census Bureau's X-11 Seasonal Adjustment procedure. Index values above 50 generally indicate an increase in activity, while values below 50 indicate a decrease.

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