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IHS Global Insight Notes Retail Sales Rebound

Procurement officers not expected to make any sudden moves on inventory
By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
August 14, 2012

According to IHS Global Insight U.S. economist Chris Christopher, the gains were broad and across most sectors.

“Most major retail sectors had unusually strong gains,” he said. “It is apparent that after a cautious second quarter, shoppers decided to head to the mall and open their wallets despite rising gasoline prices.”

He also noted that the heat wave that started at the end of June and continued into July may have assisted clothing, sporting goods, and building material outlet sales.

“But overall, we are taking a cautious view on the spending so far,” said Christopher. “We don’t expect procurement officers to make any sudden moves on inventory. Lean logistics will continue to prevail.”

This is a good report on the retail sales front. It indicates that consumers came back after hunkering down. The July retail sales numbers are a positive development, but Americans are not throwing caution to the wind. It indicates the fragility of spending patterns. Robust and enduring consumer spending growth will happen once job prospects improve and consumer confidence jumps out of recession territory.

As reported in Supply Chain Management Review, the National Retail Federation recently announced that retailers are “stocking up and hoping for a stronger fall and winter than they saw last year.

IHS Global Insight is now forecasting consumer spending adjusted for inflation to increase 2.0 percent in the third quarter, and the back-to-school retail sales season is looking significantly brighter.


About the Author

image
Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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