Data released today showed retail sales rebounded in March 1.6%. Analysts at Wells Fargo point out that despite a run of ugly data in recent reports about the consumer, they have maintained the weakness was a soft patch and not the start of a broad retrenchment.
“Retail sales grew 1.6% in March with gains in every category save sporting goods. Motor vehicles, which have been spotty recently, increased 3.1% in March. That was the largest gain after gas stations, which rose with prices.”
“After rising at a 2.5% pace in Q4, consumer spending is poised for a slowdown in the first quarter. However, the better-than-expected 1.0% increase in control group sales in today’s report feeds into the calculation in the GDP report and suggests a more modest slowing than anticipated by many forecasters.”
“Online retailers saw declines in two out of three months in the fourth quarter, but have now seen three straight monthly gains.”
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