RAPAPORT… US retail sales slowed slightly in May amid rising inflation and higher prices for essential goods.
Revenue slipped 0.3% from the previous month, versus a 0.7% increase in April, according to data the US Census Bureau released Wednesday. May sales rose 8% compared with a year earlier. Several other factors also contributed to the slowdown.
“There’s been little relief from inflation, and we expected some cooling off in sales in reaction to prices,” National Retail Federation (NRF) chief economist Jack Kleinhenz explained. “There have been swings across sectors that reflect the impact of both higher prices and supply-chain disturbances, and higher interest rates are expected to curb spending going forward.”
In May, sales advanced year on year in eight of the nine categories the US Census Bureau monitors. The clothing and accessories segment — which includes jewelry — saw the fourth-highest growth, up 6%. Revenues for the category were primarily flat versus April. Online sales across all products increased 8.5% year on year but fell 1% compared to the previous month.
Image: A shopping mall in Oregon. (Shutterstock)