Consumer spending and retail sales rebounded in May

The National Retail Federation last week announced that consumer spending and retail sales rebounded in May, signifying renewed momentum heading into the second half of the year. NRF reported that May retail sales, excluding autos, gas and restaurants, increased 0.8 percent from April and 1.9 percent on a year-over-year basis.

"Retail sales are growing at a reasonable pace and regaining momentum heading into the second half of the year," said NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz

Retail sales are growing at a reasonable pace and regaining momentum heading into the second half of the year.

Jack Kleinhenz, NRF Chief Economist

“With consumer confidence, employment and income improving, consumers were encouraged to open their wallets in May,” Kleinhenz added. “Retail sales gains were evident across most business sectors with the exception of health and personal care stores. The improvement in retail sales is consistent with employment gains and the recent uptick in consumer credit. Adding to the strength of the report, sales for March and April were revised up.”

“On the whole, retail sales are growing at a reasonable pace and regaining momentum heading into the second half of the year,” Kleinhenz said. “Latest economic data show improvement in the economy and we expect stronger sales growth as jobs and income pick up. Nonetheless stronger wage growth will be necessary to sustain further gains in retail sales.”

Additional finding from NRF’s monthly retail sales analysis can be found here: https://nrf.com/news/retail-sales-regain-momentum-may