Retail Sales See Biggest Monthly Jump Ever, But Will it Last?

June 16, 2020

Retail sales were expected to have a big month as stores across the nation reopened following the coronavirus pandemic. They easily shattered those expectations though, jumping 17.7% for the month.

This is more than double to 8% increase that had been expected and the largest monthly increase ever. The previous largest single-month increase was 6.7% in October 2001.

Clothing led the rebound, with sales seeing a 188% gain. Books, sporting goods and hobby stores were up more than 80% for the month.

While the rebound is good news and bolsters hopes for a quick economic recovery, some experts warn that the bump may be short-lived. Some economists attribute the increased spending to the government stimulus. It remains unclear if Congress will enact another round of stimulus checks, and the extra $600 unemployment benefit is scheduled to expire in July. With millions of Americans still out of work, retail sales may take another hit when these programs end.

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