(Image source: Bloomberg)

 

BY JIM FLINK

ANCHOR CARISSA LOETHEN

 

U.S. retail sales rose higher than expected in March. Some are calling it — the warm weather effect. Others -— a sign of more thawing in the economy.

 

CNBC reports —  retail sales rose 0.8 percent — better than the half percent expected.

 

“This data is something the market is definitely going to pay attention to. ... But this data is very strong, but we want to see how this balances out, Joe, should be a very interesting day.”

 

So what’s inside the numbers? MarketWatch has the analysis.

 

“Although consumers did have to spend more money to fuel their cars — sales leaped 1.1% at gas stations — it did little to deter them from spending on other things: The only retail segment to post a drop in sales was health and personal-care stores, off 0.2% last month.”

 

Reuters reports a warm weather effect — a mild winter spurring construction and shopping — pervades much of the analysis. The International Business Times notes, Americans seem to be splurging right now.

 

“Consumer spending accounts for as much as 70 percent of U.S. economic growth, so the big increase in spending over the past few months is likely to result in a stronger first-quarter growth. The gain pushed retail sales to a record $411.1 billion, 24 percent higher than the recession low in March 2009.”   

 

But jitters remain. One Bloomberg analyst says, along with the good looms the possibility of bad — and that cloud just won’t go away. Especially given weakening numbers from the Empire Index — which gauges production in a key economic sector —  New York.

 

“All still positive, but losing a lot of altitude.  Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean the national numbers are going to be the same, but it’s going to contribute to the general feeling of unease about how strong the economy really is.”

 

Stocks opened higher on the release of the retail numbers.

March Retail Sales Rise Higher Than Expected

by Nathan Giannini
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Transcript
Apr 16, 2012

March Retail Sales Rise Higher Than Expected

(Image source: Bloomberg)

 

BY JIM FLINK

ANCHOR CARISSA LOETHEN

 

U.S. retail sales rose higher than expected in March. Some are calling it — the warm weather effect. Others -— a sign of more thawing in the economy.

 

CNBC reports —  retail sales rose 0.8 percent — better than the half percent expected.

 

“This data is something the market is definitely going to pay attention to. ... But this data is very strong, but we want to see how this balances out, Joe, should be a very interesting day.”

 

So what’s inside the numbers? MarketWatch has the analysis.

 

“Although consumers did have to spend more money to fuel their cars — sales leaped 1.1% at gas stations — it did little to deter them from spending on other things: The only retail segment to post a drop in sales was health and personal-care stores, off 0.2% last month.”

 

Reuters reports a warm weather effect — a mild winter spurring construction and shopping — pervades much of the analysis. The International Business Times notes, Americans seem to be splurging right now.

 

“Consumer spending accounts for as much as 70 percent of U.S. economic growth, so the big increase in spending over the past few months is likely to result in a stronger first-quarter growth. The gain pushed retail sales to a record $411.1 billion, 24 percent higher than the recession low in March 2009.”   

 

But jitters remain. One Bloomberg analyst says, along with the good looms the possibility of bad — and that cloud just won’t go away. Especially given weakening numbers from the Empire Index — which gauges production in a key economic sector —  New York.

 

“All still positive, but losing a lot of altitude.  Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean the national numbers are going to be the same, but it’s going to contribute to the general feeling of unease about how strong the economy really is.”

 

Stocks opened higher on the release of the retail numbers.

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