NEW YORK, 2014-2-19 — /EPR Retail News/ — Love was in the air this past week as Valentine’s Day provided a much needed sales incentive for consumers. Given this, retailers enjoyed strong weekly sales results as sales rose by a solid 2.5% for the week ending February 15, 2014, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs Weekly Chain Store Sales Index. On a year-over-year basis, however, the pace of sales remained strong but slowed to 2.1%.
“Valentine’s Day gave consumers the much needed spark to shop and spend this past week,” said Michael Niemira, ICSC vice president of research and chief economist. “However, the week’s potential demand was pared somewhat by significant winter storms again. The ICSC‐GS consumer tracking survey found modest improvement versus the same week of the prior year for drug, department, apparel, wholesale clubs, specialty stores (such as jewelry stores), office and furniture stores. Dollar stores were down sharply—according to the survey, while demand was weaker for grocery and discount stores as well,” added Niemira.
For February, ICSC research forecasts that monthly comparable-store sales will increase between 3.0% and 3.5%, but will depend as weather patterns continue to impact sales results.
Week Ending Index 1977=100 Year/Year Change Weekly Change
15-Feb-14 542.0 2.1% 2.5%
08-Feb-14 528.9 2.3% -0.3%
01-Feb-14 530.7 0.0% 0.3%
25-Jan-14 529.1 2.2% 0.2%
The Weekly Chain Store Sales Snapshot is produced by the International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs. This index measures U.S. nominal same-store or comparable-store sales excluding restaurant and vehicle demand. The weekly index is constructed as a sales-weighted geometric average growth rate to preserve long-term consistency and is statistically benchmarked to a broad-based monthly retail industry sales aggregate that currently represents a sampling of leading retail chain stores, which also is compiled by ICSC. A representative sample of those major retailers has been used as a control group to extrapolate the weekly sales index. As such, the weekly index statistically represents industry sales and is not just a sum of sales for a handful of retailers. The standard period used for the index is Sunday through Saturday, even though some retailers use a different weekly accounting period. The weekly sales index is presented on an adjusted basis to account for normal seasonality and to counter other data anomalies. Weekly seasonal adjustment is at best difficult for chain store sales given that retailers can and often do shift promotions to counter typical shifts in the calendar. Nonetheless, the approach to weekly seasonal adjustment used follows from the Piser Method, which was popular in the early 1930s and became the standard for weekly adjustment.
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Founded in 1957, ICSC is the premier global trade association of the shopping center industry. Its more than 60,000 members in over 90 countries include shopping center owners, developers, managers, marketing specialists, investors, retailers and brokers, as well as academics and public officials. As the global industry trade association, ICSC links with more than 25 national and regional shopping center councils throughout the world. For more information, visit www.icsc.org.
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