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1,000-Word Charts: Retail Sales in the U.S. and Canada

Alex Carrick
1,000-Word Charts: Retail Sales in the U.S. and Canada

Due to its complexity, much of the subject matter concerning the economy requires detailed editorial commentary, often supported by relevant tables and graphs.

At the same time, though, there are many topics (e.g., relating to demographics, housing starts, etc.) that cry out for compelling ‘shorthand’ visualizations.

Whichever path is followed, the point of the journey, almost always, is to reach a bottom line or two.

To provide additional value, ConstructConnect is now pleased to offer an ongoing series of 1,000-word charts.

These will help readers sort out the ‘big picture’ more clearly.

These 1,000-word charts look at the latest retail sales figures in the U.S. (as of March 2021) and Canada (as of February 2021).

Graph 1: Total Retail Sales in the U.S. Monthly
Last Spring's big drops on the downside are now, due to the math & a low base, being counterbalanced on the upside.
The last data points are for March, 2021.
Adjusted for seasonality and trading day differences, but not for price changes (i.e., figures are in ‘current’ dollars).
Data source: Census Bureau.
Chart: ConstructConnect.
Graph 2: Total Retail Sales in Canada Monthly
Canadian 'total retail' sales in Feb 2021 were +6.0% y/y. Given that gas station sales were -7.4%, total retail sales excluding 'fill-up' stations were stronger at +7.5%. The low-price gas effect will soon disappear, however. In the latest (March 2021) Consumer Price Index results, Canadian regular gas was +5.8% m/m & +35.3% y/y.
Latest data points are for February, 2021.
Data is seasonally adjusted. Also, figures are in ‘current’ $s (i.e., no account has been taken for inflation).
Data source: Statistics Canada Table 20-10-0078-01.
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Please click on the following link to view the latest retail sales charts for the U.S. and Canada: CanaData Forecaster Charts & Tables – Retail Sales


Alex Carrick is Chief Economist for ConstructConnect. He has delivered presentations throughout North America on the U.S., Canadian and world construction outlooks. Mr. Carrick has been with the company since 1985. Links to his numerous articles are featured on Twitter @ConstructConnx, which has 50,000 followers.


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