WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The National Retail Federation today adjusted its forecast for retail sales for 2017, saying sales are now expected to increase between 3.2 percent and 3.8 percent rather than the 3.7– 4.2 percent forecast earlier this year.
“Meaningful revisions to retail sales numbers by the Census Bureau and similar revisions to personal income and consumption by the Bureau of Economic Analysis have both affected our forecast and have required us to adjust our 2017 sales projection,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “While weaker-than-expected spending in the first quarter along with decelerating inflation has also contributed to the revision, NRF anticipates stronger sales heading into the fall and holiday seasons.”
Kleinhenz said total retail sales have grown year-over-year every month since November 2009, and retail sales as calculated by NRF — which excludes automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants — have increased year-over-year in all but one month since the beginning of 2010.
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.