Retail Sales Fall Short of Expectations in October

November 17, 2020

Retail sales increased less than expected last month, leaving some analysts worried that growth will continue to slow as coronavirus cases continue to climb. Sales for the month were up 0.3%, less than the 0.5% economists had expected. September’s strong numbers were also revised downward. Sales for the month were up 1.6% instead of the 1.9% that had been previously reported.

Core retail sales, which leaves out volatile categories like food and gasoline, were up just 0.1% in October. The core component historically corresponds to the consumer spending component of GDP, so such a small increase has some economists concerned that GDP growth for the fourth quarter may disappoint.

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