- U.S. Retail Sales Jump 0.6% in July
The U.S. retail sales rose to a 7-month high in July as consumers spent more on vehicles.
Retail sales jumped 0.6 percent in July, according to the Commerce Department. The largest since December 2016.
Also, June’s retail sales were revised up to 0.3 percent from the previously reported 0.2 percent drop. While, May sales were revised up to zero percent instead of the 0.1 percent decline reported in May. This shows that the U.S. economy continued to expand amid global uncertainties and weak inflation rate.
“American shoppers flocked to the malls and even department stores in July, suggesting consumers are well-positioned to propel the economy forward in the second half of the year,” said Sal Guatieri, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto.
On a yearly basis, retail sales surged by 4.2 percent in July.
Core retail sales excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services increased 0.6 percent in July, up from revised 0.1 percent gain recorded in June.
The U.S. central bank is expected to commence normalization of its $4.5 trillion balance sheet as early as October and raise inflation one more time in December.
However, weak inflation rate remains a concern as the central bank looks to sustain 16-year low unemployment rate while gradually raising borrowing cost.