Total retail sales increased 0.5 percent in May, and April’s sales growth was revised upward from -0.2 percent to +0.3 percent. NAFCU’s Curt Long noted that strong gains in consumer spending may diminish the chances of a recession in 2019.
“Household saving rates are at normal levels, so any growth in real wages would represent an upside risk,” said Long, NAFCU’s chief economist and vice president of research, in a NAFCU Macro Data Flash report. “There are plenty of downside risks to fret over, from the trade war to energy prices to a weak May jobs report, but NAFCU believes a recession is not in the cards this year.”
Year-over-year growth in retail sales was 3.2 percent in May, which was down from 3.7 percent in April. Core retail sales increased 3.2 percent from a year ago, and auto and gas sales grew 3.1 percent.
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