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Takeaway: Despite continued negative commentary from many retailers (including DSW today) we got a rare positive datapoint on sales cadence from ICSC.

This morning’s ICSC Retail Sales Index, a measure of nominal sales growth across 80 retail concepts by the International Council of Shopping Centers, showed the most upbeat reading all year.

We find this index useful not only in tracking the yy change in sales, but also in the sequential direction of spending by week relative to prior years.

The chart below shows that 2013 (the red line) has consistently lagged the percent gain relative to 2012 until this week, where it took a noticeable turn upwards. We can’t declare victory with only one data point, but it’s a rarity given the reports we’ve seen from retailers that have more often than not noted some form of slowdown in consumer spending year-to-date.

ICSC Retail Sales Index

Retail: A Rare Positive Datapoint - icsc

Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index, % Chg vs. Year-Ago Also Had A Good Week

Retail: A Rare Positive Datapoint - redbook