U.S. Retail Sales Up 5.6 Percent from 2018, Says U.S. Census Bureau

Washington, D.C. — The U.S. Census Bureau reports that retail sales in July were up 0.9 percent from June and 5.6 percent year-over-year. The numbers exclude restaurants, gas stations and automobile sales but include e-commerce sales. July’s results build on gains of 0.6 percent month-over-month and 2.2 percent year-over-year seen in June.

Specifics from key retail sectors during July include:

  • Online and other non-store sales were up 19.3 percent year-over-year and up 2.8 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted, likely boosted by Amazon’s Prime Day promotion, which the company said had more sales than its 2018 Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales combined;
  • Health and personal care stores were up 6.1 percent year-over-year but down 0.2 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted;
  • Grocery and beverage stores were up 4 percent year-over-year and up 0.6 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted; and
  • General merchandise stores were up 2.1 percent year-over-year and up 0.6 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
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