Login



For PLUS+ subscription assistance, contact customer service.

Not a PLUS+ Subscriber?

Become a PLUS+ Subscriber today and you'll get access to all Supply Chain Management Review premium content including:

  • Full Web Access
  • 7 Magazine Issues per Year
  • Companion Digital Editions
  • Digital Edition Archives
  • Bonus Email Newsletters

Subscribe Today!

Premium access to exclusive online content, companion digital editions, magazine issues and email newsletters.

Subscribe Now.


Become a PLUS+ subscriber and you'll get access to all Supply Chain Management Review premium content including:

  • Full Web Access. All feature articles, bonus reports and industry research through scmr.com.

  • 7 Magazine Issues per year of Supply Chain Management Review magazine.

  • Companion Digital Editions. Searchable replicas of each magazine issue. Read them in any web browser. Delivered by email faster than printed issues.

  • Digital Editions Archives. Every article, every chart and every table as it appeared in the magazine for all archive issues back to 2009.

  • Bonus email newsletters. Add convenient weekly and monthly email newsletters to your subscription to keep your finger on the pulse of the industry.

PLUS+ subscriptions start as low as $109/year*. Begin yours now.
That's less than $0.36 per day for access to information that you can use year-round to better manage your entire global supply chain.

For assistance with your PLUS+ subscription, contact customer service.

* Prices higher for subscriptions outside the USA.

PLUS+ Customer Service Support


Customer service for all PLUS+ subscribers is available Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm Eastern time.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 1-800-598-6067 (1-508-663-1500 x294 outside USA)
Mail: PO Box 1496, Framingham MA 01701-1496, USA



You have been logged out of PLUS+


For PLUS+ subscription assistance, contact customer service.

Need to access our premium PLUS+ Content?
Upgrade your subscription now.


Our records show that you are currently receiving a free subscription to Supply Chain Management Review magazine, or your subscription has expired. To access our premium content, you need to upgrade your subscription to our PLUS+ status.

To upgrade your subscription account, please contact customer service at:

Email: [email protected] Phone: 1-800-598-6067 (1-508-663-1500 x294 outside USA)

Become a PLUS+ subscriber and you'll get access to all Supply Chain Management Review premium content including:

  • Full Web Access. All feature articles, bonus reports and industry research through scmr.com.

  • 7 Magazine Issues per year of Supply Chain Management Review magazine.

  • Companion Digital Editions. Searchable replicas of each magazine issue. Read them in any web browser. Delivered by email faster than printed issues.

  • Digital Editions Archives. Every article, every chart and every table as it appeared in the magazine for all archive issues back to 2010.

  • Bonus email newsletters. Add convenient weekly and monthly email newsletters to your subscription to keep your finger on the pulse of the industry.

PLUS+ subscriptions start as low as $129/year*. Start yours now.
That's less than $0.36 per day for access to information that you can use year-round to better manage your entire global supply chain.

This content is available for PLUS+ subscribers.


Already a PLUS+ subscriber?


To begin or upgrade your subscription, Become a PLUS+ subscriber now.

For assistance with your PLUS+ subscription, contact customer service.

Sorry, but your login to PLUS+ has failed.


Please recheck your login information and resubmit below.



For PLUS+ subscription assistance, contact customer service.

February 2013 retail sales show promising signs

February retail sales exceeded expectations, according to data released today by the United States Department of Commerce and the National Retail Federation (NRF).

By ·
By ·

February retail sales exceeded expectations, according to data released today by the United States Department of Commerce and the National Retail Federation (NRF).

Commerce reported that February retail sales at $421.4 billion were up 1.1 percent compared to January and up 4.6 percent compared to February 2012. Total sales for the December 2012 through February 2013 period were up 4.5 percent annually. What’s more, February represents the highest rate at which retail sales have risen going back to a 1.1 percent gain last September.

The NRF reported that February retail sales, which exclude autos, gas stations, and restaurants, were up 0.7 percent on a seasonally-adjusted basis from January and up 0.5 percent on an unadjusted basis annually. NRF officials said that this performance reflects how consumers quickly adapted and adjusted their spending in response to a payroll tax increase and higher gasoline prices in February.

“Consumers, once again, exceeded economists’ expectations and estimates in February,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said in a statement. “It may be too early to measure the impact of the payroll tax hike and higher gasoline prices on consumer spending. However, this portends a good, but not great, first quarter for retailers as consumers continue to breathe life into the economy.”

As previously reported, even with retail sales growth occurring—despite being at a relatively low rate—there remains a mixed bag of signals and headwinds on the economic front, including a slightly declining unemployment rate,
improving consumer confidence data, as well as encouraging automotive sales and housing data.

These things are occurring, though, against the backdrop of sluggish GDP growth and general uncertainty regarding the economy.

As many economists continue to point out, higher job growth levels have the potential to boost retail sales—and overall—economic growth. But even with employment data showing some gains, it is still not yet occurring at a rate that has a meaningful impact on retail sales growth.

As previously reported, retail sales largely show slow and incremental growth, while continued growth is needed over a longer period, as consumer spending accounts for roughly 70 percent of U.S. economic activity. And while retail growth is relatively slow still, signals remain intact that the economy is showing some signs of recovery, with consumer confidence on the upswing to a large degree declines in gasoline prices over the last two months.

The continuing trend of slight or flattish sequential retail sales increases remains largely intact due to fairly even retail spending at a time when retailers remain cautious on the inventory planning side and postponing commitments until the until the economic outlook becomes clearer, while they are risking stock outages by having very lean inventories.

“It is very encouraging retail sales are up because it indicates that there is enough resiliency on the part of the consumer to withstand the higher payroll tax and all of the uncertainty to still keep buying,” said FTR Associates Senior Partner Larry Gross. “One month does not make a trend, but it is positive. FTR’s has not changed its base view of the economy, which is still calling for very modest growth, but our bias has shifted in the near-term from worrying about the downside to considering upside potential.”

Growth in housing, said Gross, is likely to continue to be a positive force for the economy and subsequently retail sales, with the overhang of unsold inventory down below historic norms even though current sales levels remain well-below pre-recession levels. But the real question will be where housing levels end up this year compared to last year, he explained.

“The opportunity is there for better than expected performance,” said Gross. “We have not changed our base expectations yet.”


About the Author

Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. Contact Jeff Berman

Subscribe to Supply Chain Management Review Magazine!

Subscribe today. Don't Miss Out!
Get in-depth coverage from industry experts with proven techniques for cutting supply chain costs and case studies in supply chain best practices.
Start Your Subscription Today!

Article Topics

Retail Sales · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Plan. Manage. Recover. The power of risk management and resilience.
Savvy supply chain managers are putting risk management at the top of their to-do lists, planning for the recovery following inevitable disruptions.
Download Today!
From the September-October 2017
Additive manufacturing and 3D printing promise to simplify manufacturing, reduce inventories, and streamline operations. But, to determine when and how to apply additive manufacturing, organizations need a decision model that assesses it’s market strategy, supply chain performance, and complexity.
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!


Latest Webcast
Risk and Resiliency 2.0:  Three New Keys to Managing Supply Chain Risk
It’s no longer enough to simply identify risk. In Risk Management 2.0, resiliency is the name of the game. This webinar explains how leading firms are broadening their view of risk; expanding it to include the impact on reputation and social responsibility; and elevating the corporate and strategic importance of risk management.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
Clean Cargo Working Group Launches Annual Emissions Factors
The Clean Cargo Working Group reached a major milestone of 50 corporate members
Data Management “Hype Cycle” Revealed in Gartner 2017 Report
The “Hype Cycle for Data Management,” developed by Gartner, Inc. is designed to assist CIOs,...

Tech Innovation Creates Some Jobs But Puts Others at Risk
The dramatic opening of the global economy, combined with the rapid pace of technological change,...
Deloitte Report Gives Atlanta High Marks for Supply Chain Connectivity
SupplyChainCity Analysis places the region among top seven North American cities