JP: Retail Sales

Wed Jun 28 18:50:00 CDT 2017

Consensus Actual Previous
Year over Year 3.1% 2.0% 3.2%

Retail sales in Japan grew by 2.0 percent in May, down from an increase of 3.2 percent in April and below the consensus forecast for an increase of 3.1 percent. This is the seventh consecutive year-on-year increase in retail sales. Seasonally-adjusted retail sales fell 1.6 percent on the month, the first decline in five months after growth of 1.4 percent in April.

Weaker headline growth in retail sales was largely driven by food and beverage sales, up just 0.1 percent on the year in May compared with an increase of 1.3 percent in April. Year-on-year growth in sales also slowed for apparel, fuel, and general merchandise. This was partly offset by stronger year-on-year growth in auto sales, up from 6.3 percent to 7.0 percent.

Household spending data for May are scheduled for release tomorrow.

Retail Sales measure the total receipts at stores that sell durable and nondurable goods. The data are part of the Preliminary Report on the Current Survey of Commerce.

Another way to look at consumer spending in addition to the household spending survey is through the retail sales report. This report gives the total value of goods and services sold each month at retail outlets. The preferred number is the change from the previous year. The report serves as a direct gauge of consumption and consumer confidence. Consumer spending is one of the most important leading indicators for the Japanese economy. Increasing sales signal consumer confidence and economic growth, but higher consumption also leads to inflationary pressures.