US retail sales up 4.4% in May

Shedding light on retail figures

U.S. retail sales (excluding auto) rallied in May to a 4.4 % year-over-year increase, according to the latest SpendingPulse report, a macro-economic indicator that tracks national retail sales, released by MasterCard Advisors. This is a positive boost compared to the lift seen in April and well above the average growth rate for Q1 2013 (which saw 2.6 % year-over-year growth).

“Retail sales haven’t been this robust since November of last year,” said Sarah Quinlan, SVP, Market Insights for MasterCard Advisors. “This gain is most likely due to the ‘wealth effect‘ of a stronger real estate market and high stock market indices. However, our analysis shows that people are still spending cautiously and focusing on needs rather than wants. This is reflected in the weak sales for sectors such as Electronics and Department Stores.”

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