The National Retail Federation reported that January retail sales are nearly as good as December—dropping 0.26 percent seasonally adjusted from the month—and fueled a healthy 5.4 percent increase year-over year. The numbers exclude automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants.
The January numbers follow 5.1 percent unadjusted year-over-year growth in holiday sales during November and December, which was revised down slightly today from the 5.5 percent initially reported. December was down 0.1 percent from November seasonally adjusted but up 3.8 percent year-over-year. The three-month year-over-year moving average is at 5.2 percent.
The results comes as NRF is forecasting that 2018 retail sales will grow between 3.8 percent and 4.4 percent over 2017.