Retail sales in the US sank 16.4 percent from a month earlier in April of 2020, worse than forecasts of a 12 percent drop. It is the sharpest decrease in retail sales ever due to the coronavirus pandemic which forced Americans to stay at home and many businesses to close. Biggest declines were seen in sales of clothing and accessories (-78.8 percent), electronics and appliances (-60.6 percent) and furniture (-58.7 percent). Sales at gasoline stations decreased 28.8 percent after oil prices turned negative for the first time ever in April. Other decreases were also seen in food and beverage stores (-13.1 percent) and food services and drinking places (-29.5 percent). Excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services, retail sales tumbled 15.3 percent. Year-on-year, retail sales went down 21.6 percent, also a record drop.

Retail Sales MoM in the United States averaged 0.28 percent from 1992 until 2020, reaching an all time high of 6.70 percent in October of 2001 and a record low of -16.40 percent in April of 2020. This page provides - U.S. December Retail Sales Increased More Than Forecast - actual values, historical data, forecast, chart, statistics, economic calendar and news. U.S. Retail Sales - data, historical chart, forecasts and calendar of releases - was last updated on June of 2020. source: U.S. Census Bureau

Retail Sales MoM in the United States is expected to be -0.20 percent by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Retail Sales MoM in the United States to stand at 1.70 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the U.S. Retail Sales is projected to trend around 2.40 percent in 2021 and 0.40 percent in 2022, according to our econometric models.

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U.S. Retail Sales

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
-16.40 -8.30 6.70 -16.40 1992 - 2020 percent Monthly
Current Prices, SA


Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2020-02-14 01:30 PM Jan 0.3% 0.2% 0.3% 0.3%
2020-03-17 12:30 PM Feb -0.5% 0.6% 0.2% 0.1%
2020-04-15 12:30 PM Mar -8.7% -0.4% -8% -6.5%
2020-05-15 12:30 PM Apr -16.4% -8.3% -12% -11.8%
2020-06-16 12:30 PM May -16.4% -2%
2020-07-16 12:30 PM Jun -0.2%
2020-08-14 12:30 PM Jul
2020-09-16 12:30 PM Aug


News Stream
US Retail Sales Plunge at Record Pace
Retail sales in the US sank 16.4 percent from a month earlier in April of 2020, worse than forecasts of a 12 percent drop. It is the sharpest decrease in retail sales on record due to the coronavirus pandemic which forced Americans to stay at home and many businesses to close. Biggest declines were seen in sales of clothing and accessories (-78.8 percent), electronics and appliances (-60.6 percent) and furniture (-58.7 percent). Sales at gasoline stations decreased 28.8 percent after oil prices turned negative for the first time ever in April. Other decreases were also seen in food and beverage stores (-13.1 percent) and food services and drinking places (-29.5 percent). Excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services, retail sales tumbled 15.3 percent. Year-on-year, retail sales went down 21.6 percent, also a record drop.
2020-05-15
US March Retail Sales Plunges Less Than Estimated
Retail sales in the US plunged 8.4 percent from a month earlier in March 2020, compared with a preliminary estimate of 8.7 percent, revised figures showed. It was still the biggest decline on record as the coronavirus crisis hit the economy. The biggest decreases were recorded for clothing, furniture, restaurants & bars, motor vehicles & parts, sporting goods, hobby, musical instrument & books, and electronics & appliances. Receipts at gasoline stations also fell sharply as consumers cut back spending on fuel and as oil prices plunged. On the other hand, sales of food & beverages and health & personal care products rose.
2020-04-27
US Retail Sales Fall at a Record Pace
Retail sales in the US plunged 8.7% month-over-month in March of 2020, following a downwardly revised 0.4% drop in February and worse than market forecasts of a 8% drop. It is the biggest decline on record, in a sign that the coronavirus impact on the economy may be harder than anticipated. The biggest decreases were recorded for clothing (-50.5%); furniture (-26.8%); food services and drinking places (-26.5%); motor vehicles (-25.6%); sporting goods, hobby, musical instrument, book stores (-23.3%); gasoline stations (-17.2%); electronics and appliances (-15.1%) and miscellaneous (-14.3%). On the other hand, rises were seen in sales of food and beverages (25.6%) and health and personal care (4.3%). Year-on-year, retail sales fell 6.2%.
2020-04-15
US Retail Sales Post Biggest Fall in Over a Year
Retail sales in the US dropped 0.5 percent from a month earlier in February 2020, following an upwardly revised 0.6 percent increase in January and missing market expectations of a 0.2 percent rise. It was the largest decline in trade since December 2018 as consumers cut back spending on a range of products, including motor vehicles & parts (-0.9 percent vs 0.8 percent), furniture (-0.4 percent vs 3.2 percent), electronics & appliances (-1.4 percent vs 0.6 percent), building materials (-1.3 percent vs 3.3 percent), health & personal care products (-0.1 percent vs 0.8 percent) and clothing (-1.2 percent vs -1.4 percent). Receipts also declined at gasoline stations (-2.8 percent vs -0.4 percent), restaurants & bars (-0.5 percent vs 0.8 percent) and general merchandise stores (-0.1 percent vs 0.5 percent). Excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services retail sales were unchanged last month after increasing by 0.4 percent in January.
2020-03-17

U.S. Retail Sales
Retail sales report in the US provides aggregated measure of sales of retail goods and services over a period of a month. There are thirteen major types of retailers: Motor vehicle & parts dealers (around 20 percent of total sales), Food & beverage stores (13%), General merchandise stores (12.5%), Food services & drinking places (11%), Gasoline stations (10%), Nonstore retailers (9.2%), Building material & garden dealers (6%), Health & personal care stores (6%), Clothing & clothing accessories stores (5%), Miscellaneous store retailers (2.3%), Furniture stores (2%), Electronics & appliance stores (2%) and Sporting goods, hobby, book & music stores (1.7%).