JP: Retail Sales

Thu Sep 28 18:50:00 CDT 2017

Consensus Actual Previous
Year over Year 2.6% 1.7% 1.9%

August retail sales were up 1.7 percent on the year after increasing 1.8 percent in July. The gain was somewhat lower than the 2.6 percent increase that was expected by analysts. Among the categories comprising retail sales, auto sales jumped 8.3 percent and machinery & equipment were 4.6 percent higher. On the down side, general merchandise retreated 0.3 percent and non-store retailers were down 0.5 percent. Fuel sales increased 1.4 percent while medicine & toiletry stores sales were up 5.4 percent.

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.