U.S. Chain Store Sales Rose 2.6 Percent in July, ICSC Reports


In July, U.S. chain store sales increased by 2.6 percent compared to July 2007, according to ICSC’s index. Although the gain was softer than June’s hefty 4.2 percent rise, the July performance was in line with the year-to-date 2.5 percent average monthly year-over-year growth rate trend, says Michael P. Niemira, ICSC’s chief economist and director of research. “Value and convenience retailers performed better in July than the industry as a whole as sales at discount stores, wholesale clubs, and drug stores led the industry,” he said. “Although July captured some early back-to-school shopping, the month was dominated by clearance sales and discounts.” Looking forward to August, as demand for back-to-school and fall merchandise kicks in, Niemira expects industry sales will post a 2 percent increase.

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