US seasonally adjusted retail sales rise 0.2% in December from November, 4.1% year-over-year to US$431.9B; for 2013, retail sales up 4.2% over 2012: Dept. of Commerce

WASHINGTON , January 14, 2014 (press release) – The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for December, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $431.9 billion, an increase of 0.2 percent (±0.5%)* from the previous month, and 4.1 percent (±0.7%) above December 2012. Total sales for the 12 months of 2013 were up 4.2 percent (±1.7%) from 2012. Total sales for the October through December 2013 period were up 1.0 percent (±0.5%) from the same period a year ago. The October to November 2013 percent change was revised from +0.7 percent (±0.5%) to +0.4 percent (±0.2%).

Retail trade sales were up 0.2 percent (±0.5%)* from November 2013, and 4.0 percent (±0.7%) above last year. Nonstore retailers were up 9.9 percent (±2.1%) from December of 2012 and auto and other motor vehicle dealers were up 6.2 percent (±2.1%) from last year.

The advance estimates are based on a subsample of the Census Bureau’s full retail and food services sample. A stratified random sampling method is used to select approximately 5,000 retail and food services firms whose sales are then weighted and benchmarked to represent the complete universe of over three million retail and food services firms. Responding firms account for approximately 65% of the MARTS dollar volume estimate. For an explanation of the measures of sampling variability included in this report, please see the Reliability of Estimates section on the last page of this publication.

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