Sluggish Shoppers: Retail Sales Dropped in June

Reports show that U.S. retail sales in June were lower than expected, once again raising concerns about the economy’s progress. American households cut back on automobile purchases and other core products during the month, despite projected increases. Clothing stores reported a sales drop of roughly1.5 percent, the largest decline since September 2014. Additionally, building material, garden equipment, furniture, and online stores reported similar showings. However, sales at electronic and appliance stores rose 1.0 percent, the biggest jump since September. Experts suspect some of the disappointing numbers may be attributed to an earlier memorial day weekend this year, leading to bigger gains in May.

Treasury yields reportedly dropped, and the dollar added to losses against the euro and the yen. The Commerce Department reports retail sales fell by 0.3 percent in June, the worst report since February and disappointing after May’s sales were up by 1.0 percent. June was also a disappointment for employment reports and a related drop in small business confidence. Despite some of the economic gains reported earlier this year, the U.S. economy may have lost some of the momentum it regained at the end of the second quarter.

Many experts suspect that Americans are waiting to see if the Federal Reserve will raise its key interest rate this year. The decision would be the first time the Fed has raised rates in almost a decade, but the decision will not be made until September. The Fed’s committee is reportedly waiting to see how the summer numbers panned out before making a decision. If you have any questions about how the market numbers, or the looming Fed decision, could impact your family’s wealth, our advisors would happily look over your finances and give you an honest appraisal of your financial health and wealth. We pride ourselves on providing personalized solutions to your personal portfolios and wealth.