National Retail Federation: Retail industry employment saw a modest decline in September

WASHINGTON, 2017-Oct-10 — /EPR Retail News/ — Retail industry employment saw a modest decline in September, decreasing 4,600 jobs from revised August figures, the National Retail Federation said today (October 6, 2017). The number excludes automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants. The economy overall saw a loss of 33,000 jobs in September.

“The recent hurricanes have caused distortions to economic figures and September employment numbers are likely to undergo dramatic revisions,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “The silver lining is that hourly wages continue to gradually increase, giving households more spending power as the all-important holiday season approaches. Overall, the underlying momentum of the economy and the strength of the labor market remains firm.”

Kleinhenz noted that retail job numbers reported by the Labor Department don’t paint an entirely accurate picture of the industry because they count only employees who work in stores while excluding retail workers in other parts of the business like corporate headquarters, distribution centers, call centers and innovation labs.

Economy-wide, average hourly earnings have increased by 74 cents – 2.9 percent – over the past 12 months.  The Labor Department said the unemployment rate decreased to 4.2 percent, down from 4.4 percent in August.

About NRF
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

Contact:

Robin Roberts
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

NRF: Retail industry employment declined slightly in July, decreasing 1,700 jobs from June

WASHINGTON, 2017-Aug-07 — /EPR Retail News/ — Retail industry employment declined slightly in July, decreasing 1,700 jobs from June, the National Retail Federation said today. The numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants. The economy overall saw gains of 209,000 jobs in July, exceeding growth expectations for the month.

“Overall job and wage growth are positive indicators for the retail industry since it means consumers have more money to spend when they come into stores or shop online,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Of note, the oft-maligned department store sector has had two consecutive months of job increases. With back-to-school shopping ramping up and the holiday season just around the corner, retailers will only be busier in the weeks and months ahead.”

On a three-month average, retail jobs have decreased by 4,200 jobs as calculated by NRF using current government data.

Kleinhenz noted that retail job numbers reported by the Labor Department don’t paint an entirely accurate picture of the industry because they count only employees who work in stores while excluding retail workers in other parts of the business like corporate headquarters, distribution centers, call centers and innovation labs.

While the sporting goods sector saw decreased employment in July, department stores, building materials and supply stores, and health and personal care stores all saw job gains. Department store employment has increased for the past two months, with June and July gaining a combined total of 6,000 jobs. The increase in health and personal care employment was a reversal of June’s decline in jobs.

Economy-wide, average hourly earnings in July grew 2.5 percent year-over-year, keeping pace with the increase in June. The Labor Department said July unemployment was at 4.3 percent, down from 4.4 percent in June.

About NRF
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

Contact:
Robin Roberts
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

NRF: Retail sales in June up 3.2 percent from June 2016

WASHINGTON, 2017-Jul-17 — /EPR Retail News/ — Retail sales in June were essentially unchanged over May on a seasonally adjusted basis, but up 3.2 percent unadjusted from June 2016, according to calculations released today (July 14, 2017) by the National Retail Federation. The numbers exclude automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants.

“Deflating pricing in retail continues to aggravate measurements of spending in June. Consumers continue to make purchases, but total sales reflects depressed prices on the volume of goods purchased,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Nonetheless, consumer fundamentals remain solid, with no expectations for spending to cool off in the remaining summer months.

“Given the strength of consumer sentiment and other indicators – housing prices, net worth and use of credit – it’s puzzling to see consumer spending move at a slower pace,” Kleinhenz said.

Sales in June were driven by online and other non-store sales. Building materials and furniture also reported gains, perhaps reflecting a stronger housing market.

Sales increased 3.9 percent on a three-month moving average year-over-year.

Specifics include:

  • Online and other non-store sales increased 0.4 percent seasonally adjusted over May and increased 9.9 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Sales at clothing and accessories stores decreased 0.1 percent seasonally adjusted from May and increased 1 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Sales at general merchandise stores increased 0.4 percent seasonally adjusted over May and increased 2.3 percent year-over-year.
  • Electronics and appliances stores’ sales increased 1 percent seasonally adjusted over May and increased 1.6 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Furniture and home furnishings stores’ sales increased 1 percent seasonally adjusted from May and increased 3.5 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Sales at building materials and supplies stores sales increased 5 percent from May and increased 5.1 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Sporting goods stores’ sales decreased 0.6 percent seasonally adjusted from May and decreased 7.7 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
  • Sales at health and personal care stores increased 0.3 percent over May and increased 0.9 percent unadjusted year-over-year.

About NRF
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

Contact:
Treacy Reynolds
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

NRF: Retail industry employment in June gained 7,400 jobs over May

WASHINGTON, 2017-Jul-10 — /EPR Retail News/ — Retail industry employment turned a corner in June, gaining 7,400 jobs over May, the National Retail Federation said today (July 7, 2017). The retail numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants. The economy overall saw gains of 222,000 jobs in June, far exceeding growth expectations for the month.

“The gain in June shows that the industry is still very much meeting the demands of consumers and households,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “While one month does not make a trend, retailers are working through a transformative time and gearing up for back-to-school and the not-too-distant winter holiday season.”

Average hourly earnings in June showed a slight gain of 2.5 percent year-over-year, compared with 2.4 percent in May.

On a three-month average, retail jobs have decreased by 2,200 fewer jobs as calculated by NRF. On a year-over-year basis seasonally adjusted, retail jobs have decreased by 32,900 positions.

The retail sector saw mixed results in business lines in June with general merchandise that includes department stores registering a 12,200-job gain. This gain was offset by declines in the clothing segments and health and personal care, which lost a combined 12,600 jobs.

The Labor Department said June unemployment was at 4.4 percent, up from 4.3 percent in May.

About NRF
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

Contact:

Treacy Reynolds
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

NRF: Retail industry employment down by 8,500 jobs in May from April

WASHINGTON, 2017-Jun-05 — /EPR Retail News/ — Retail industry employment decreased by 8,500 jobs in May from April, the National Retail Federation said today (June 2, 2017), while average hourly earnings were up 2.5 percent on a year-over-year basis, in line with growth in recent months. The numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants. The overall economy gained 138,000 jobs in May, the Labor Department said.

“Though job growth in the retail industry decelerated in May, employment overall is above what is needed to keep sustained growth in the economy,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Solid fundamentals in the job market are encouraging for retail spending, as employment gains generate additional income for consumers and consequently increase spending.”

“We’ve seen a seesaw of gains and losses in retail employment over the past several months, reflective of the ongoing transformation of our industry,” Kleinhenz said. “While we are looking for a new equilibrium in retail employment, it will take time for the industry to adjust to rapid changes in consumer spending habits and demographic patterns.”

“We are optimistic that in the months ahead Congress and the Administration will continue to make progress on the regulatory reform agenda and make policy changes like comprehensive tax reform to help the economy grow and create new jobs,” Matthew Shay, NRF President and CEO said.

On a three-month moving average on a seasonally adjusted basis, retail employment shows a decline of 17,900 jobs. The Labor Department said April unemployment fell to 4.3 percent, the lowest it has been in more than a decade.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics data, the retail industry currently has over 548,000 job openings.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

Contact:
Treacy Reynolds
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

NRF: Retail industry employment decreased by 30,300 jobs in March from February

WASHINGTON, 2017-Apr-08 — /EPR Retail News/ — Retail industry employment decreased by 30,300 jobs in March from February, a substantially weaker-than-expected report due in part to weather patterns from mild temperatures to blizzards, the National Retail Federation said today(April 7, 2017). The numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants. The overall economy gained 98,000 jobs in March, the Labor Department said.

“The focus should be on wages, which remained strong in March,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Wage growth translates into increased spending by consumers and benefits the economy overall. Nonetheless, some retail sectors have grown while others are continuing to adjust job deployment relative to changes in consumer behavior and buying patterns.”

“The rate of improvement in the labor market continues in a roller coaster pattern, but its pace is moving in the right direction and is probably consistent with an economy in its eighth year of expansion,” Kleinhenz said.

Average hourly earnings remained strong, coming in 2.7 percent higher than the same time a year ago compared with 2.8 percent in February. On a three-month moving average, retail employment shows a decline of 12,600 jobs.

The Labor Department said March unemployment fell to 4.5 percent, down from 4.7 percent in February and the lowest since May 2007.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

Contact:

Treacy Reynolds
press@nrf.com (855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

The National Retail Federation releases its economic forecast for 2017

WASHINGTON, 2017-Feb-09 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Retail Federation today (February 8, 2017) released its economic forecast for 2017, projecting that retail industry sales, which exclude automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants, will grow between 3.7 and 4.2 percent over 2016. Online and other non-store/online sales, which are included in the overall number, are expected to increase between 8 and 12 percent.

“The economy is on firm ground as we head into 2017 and is expected to build on the momentum we saw late last year,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “With jobs and income growing and debt relatively low, the fundamentals are in place and the consumer is in the driver’s seat. But this year is unlike any other – while consumers have strength they haven’t had in the past, they will remain hesitant to spend until they have more certainty about policy changes on taxes, trade and other issues being debated in Congress.

“Lawmakers should take note and stand firm against any policies, rules or regulations that would increase the cost of everyday goods for American consumers,” Shay said.

“Prospects for consumer spending are straightforward – more jobs and more income will result in more spending,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Regardless of sentiment, the pace of wage growth and job creation dictate spending. Our forecast represents a baseline for the year, but potential fiscal policy changes could impact consumers and the economy. It seems unlikely that businesses will notably increase investment until tax reform and trade policies are well-defined.”

“It is clear that online sales will continue to expand in 2017 and provide growth for the retail industry,” Kleinhenz said. “But it is important to realize that virtually major retailer sells online and many of those sales will be made by discount stores, department stores and other traditional retailers. Retailers sell to consumers however they want to buy, whether it’s in-store, online or mobile.”

Additional Economic Insights:

  • The economy is expected to gain an average of approximately 160,000 jobs a month. The number is down slightly from 2016 but consistent with labor market growth.
  • Unemployment is expected to drop to 4.6 percent by the end of the year.
  • Economic growth is likely to be in the range of 1.9 to 2.4 percent.
  • The forecast is a baseline, and does not take into account new fiscal measures pending in Washington.

Retail industry sales as defined by NRF include most traditional retail categories including non-store sales, discounters, department stores, grocery stores, specialty stores, and auto parts and accessories stores but exclude sales at automotive dealers, gasoline stations, and restaurants. Non-store/online sales include online sales, kiosks, catalogs, etc. and are a breakout of the overall number.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

Contact:
Treacy Reynolds
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

NRF expects 3.6% sales increase in November and December

NRF expects 3.6% sales increase in November and December
NRF expects 3.6% sales increase in November and December

 

WASHINGTON, 2016-Oct-06 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Retail Federation announced today it expects sales in November and December, excluding autos, gas and restaurant sales, to increase a solid 3.6 percent to $655.8 billion — significantly higher than the 10-year average of 2.5 percent and above the seven-year average of 3.4 percent since recovery began in 2009. Additionally, NRF is forecasting non-store sales to increase between 7 and 10 percent to as much as $117 billion.

“All of the fundamentals are in a good place, giving strength to consumers and leading us to believe that this will be a very positive holiday season,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “This year hasn’t been perfect, starting with a long summer and unseasonably warm fall, but our forecast reflects the very realistic steady momentum of the economy and industry expectations.”

“We remain optimistic that the pace of economic activity will pick up in the near term,” continued Shay.

Holiday sales in 2015 increased 3.2 percent over the previous year.

“Consumers have seen steady job and income gains throughout the year, resulting in continued confidence and the greater use of credit, which bodes well for more spending throughout the holiday season,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Increased geopolitical uncertainty, the presidential election outcome and unseasonably warm weather are the main issues at play with the greatest potential to shake consumer confidence and impact shopping patterns.”

“However, the economic spending power of the consumer is resilient and it should never be underestimated.” continued Kleinhenz.

NRF’s holiday sales forecast is based on an economic model using several indicators including, consumer credit, disposable personal income and previous monthly retail sales releases. The overall forecast includes the non-store category (direct-to-consumer, kiosks and online sales.) For historical sales information visit NRF’s Holiday Headquarters and the Retail Insight Center.

NRF Forecasts Seasonal Employment to Grow Between 640,000 and 690,000

According to NRF, retailers are expected to hire between 640,000 and 690,000 seasonal workers this holiday season, in line with last year’s 675,300 new holiday positions.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. nrf.com

Contact:

Treacy Reynolds
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

###

The National Retail Federation expects November and December sales to increase by 3.7 percent to $630.5 billion

Washington, DC, 2015-10-8 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Retail Federation announced today it expects sales in November and December (excluding autos, gas and restaurant sales) to increase a solid 3.7 percent to $630.5 billion — significantly higher than the 10-year average of 2.5 percent. Holiday sales in 2015 are expected to represent approximately 19 percent of the retail industry’s annual sales of $3.2 trillion. Additionally, NRF is forecasting online sales to increase between 6 and 8 percent to as much as $105 billion.

“With several months of solid retail sales behind us, we’re heading into the all-important holiday season fully expecting to see healthy growth,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “However, while economic indicators have improved in several areas, Americans remain somewhat torn between their desire and their ability to spend; the fact remains consumers still have the weight of the economy on their minds, further explaining the complex retail spending environment we are seeing right now. We expect families to spend prudently and deliberately, though still less constrained than what we saw even two years ago.”

“Potential disruptions from yet another government shutdown in mid-December and a slower pace of job creation and income growth are just a few key factors that will impact holiday shoppers’ spending this year,” continued Shay. “Price, value and even timing will all play a role in how, when, where and why people shop over the holiday season. Retailers will be competitive not only on price, but on digital initiatives, store hours, product offerings and much more.”

Holiday sales in 2014 increased 4.1 percent over the previous year.

HISTORICAL HOLIDAY SALES

The National Retail Federation expects sales in November and December (excluding autos, gas and restaurant sales) to increase a solid 3.7 percent to $630.5 billion — significantly higher than the 10-year average of 2.5 percent.

“Similar to last year in the sense we’re coming off a rather disappointing first half, this holiday season brings to light several crosscurrents that still exist for American households,” said NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz. “While confidence data is encouraging, slower job growth in 2015, deflationary retail prices and the mix of consumer spending somewhat shifting toward big ticket items and services, as well as the wild card in our government spending debates, will all contribute to the slower growth rate of sales expected for the holiday season.”

“All said, there’s no reason to doubt that we will see solid retail sales growth in the final two months of the year,” continued Kleinhenz.

NRF’s holiday sales forecast is based on an economic model using several indicators including, consumer credit, disposable personal income and previous monthly retail sales releases. It also includes the non-store category (direct-to-consumer, kiosks and online sales.) For historic sales information visit NRF’s Holiday Headquarters and the Retail Insight Center.

NRF Forecasts Seasonal Employment to Grow Between 700,000 and 750,000

According to NRF, retailers are expected to hire between 700,000 and 750,000 seasonal workers this holiday season, in line with last year’s 714,000 new holiday positions.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. nrf.com

###

Kathy Grannis Allen
(202) 783-7971
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

National Retail Federation expects sales in November and December to increase 4.1 percent vs. 2013’s 3.1 percent increase during that same time frame

Optimism Shines as National Retail Federation Forecasts Holiday Sales to Increase 4.1

Washington, 2014-10-7— /EPR Retail News/ — After a turbulent start to 2014, the National Retail Federation announced today it expects sales in November and December (excluding autos, gas and restaurant sales) to increase a healthy 4.1 percent to $616.9 billion, higher than 2013’s actual 3.1 percent increase during that same time frame.

Holiday sales on average have grown 2.9 percent over the past 10 years, including 2014’s estimates, and are expected to represent approximately 19.2 percent of the retail industry’s annual sales of $3.2 trillion. This would mark the first time since 2011 that holiday sales would increase more than 4 percent.

“Retailers could see a welcome boost in holiday shopping, giving some companies the shot in the arm they need after a volatile first half of the year and an uneventful summer,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “While expectations for sales growth are upbeat, it goes without saying there still remains some uneasiness and anxiety among consumers when it comes to their purchase decisions. The lagging economic recovery, though improving, is still top of mind for many Americans.

“Recognizing the need to keep household budgets in line, we expect shoppers will be extremely price sensitive as they have been for quite some time. Retailers will respond by differentiating themselves and touting price, value and exclusivity,” continued Shay.

While consumer confidence has been unstable much of the year, improvements over the past few months in key economic indicators will give way to increased spending power among holiday shoppers. Retail sales, jobs and housing data all point to healthy gains.

“Though we have only seen consumer income and spending moderately – and erratically – accelerate this year, we believe there is still room for optimism this holiday season,” said NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz. “In the grand scheme of things, consumers are in a much better place than they were this time last year, and the extra spending power could very well translate into solid holiday sales growth for retailers; however, shoppers will still be deliberate with their purchases, while hunting for hard-to-pass-up bargains.”

NRF’s holiday sales forecast is based on an economic model using several indicators including, consumer credit, disposable personal income, and previous monthly retail sales releases. It now includes the non-store category (direct-to-consumer, kiosks and online sales.) For historic sales information visit NRF’s Holiday Headquarters and the Retail Insight Center.

Shop.org Forecasts Online Sales to Grow Between 8 – 11% This Holiday Season

Shop.org today released its 2014 online holiday sales forecast, expecting sales in November and December to grow between 8 – 11 percent over last holiday season to as much as $105 billion.**

Shop.org forecasts sales based on government data including, consumer credit, disposable personal income, and previous monthly retail sales releases. Holiday non-store sales in 2013 grew 8.6 percent.

img alt from entity

Infographic provided by National Retail Federation

 

NRF Forecasts Seasonal Employment to Grow Between 725,000 – 800,000

According to NRF, retailers are expected to hire between 725,000 and 800,000 seasonal workers this holiday season, potentially more than they actually hired during the 2013 holiday season (768,000). Seasonal employment in 2013 increased 14 percent over the previous holiday season.

“These holiday positions offer hundreds of thousands of people the opportunity to turn their seasonal position into a long-term career opportunity in retail,” said Shay.

img alt from entity

Infographic provided by National Retail Federation

PRESS AND ANALYSTS ONLY: Join NRF for a media briefing today at 11:00 a.m. with NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay and NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz, Ph.D. On the call, Shay and Kleinhenz will discuss the rationale and metrics behind NRF’s holiday forecast along with economic expectations for the remainder of 2014. Register for the briefing by emailing press@nrf.com.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. www.nrf.com

###

Kathy Grannis
Treacy Reynolds
(202) 783-7971
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press