FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2009, AT 8:30 A.M. EDT


Timothy Winters / Ian Thomas                                                                                                                                                                                            CB09-136
Service Sector Statistics Division
(301) 763-2713

ADVANCE MONTHLY SALES FOR RETAIL TRADE AND FOOD SERVICES


AUGUST 2009

Special Notice - Beginning with the December 11, 2009 release for November 2009, estimates in this release will be based on a new sample. A new sample for the Advance Monthly Retail Trade Survey is selected about once every two and a half years. For further information on the sample revision, see our website at http://www.census.gov/retail

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for August, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $351.4 billion, an increase of 2.7 percent (0.5%) from the previous month, but 5.3 percent (0.7%) below August 2008. Total sales for the June through August 2009 period were down 7.6 percent (0.3%) from the same period a year ago. The June to July 2009 percent change was revised from -0.1 percent (0.5%)* to -0.2 percent (0.2%)*.

Retail trade sales were up 3.0 percent (0.7%) from July 2009, but 6.0 percent (0.7%) below last year. Gasoline stations sales were down 26.7 percent (1.5%) from August 2008 and building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers were down 13.6 percent (2.0%) 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.

Percent Change in Retail and Food Services Sales

(Estimates adjusted for seasonal variation, holiday, and trading-day differences, but not for price changes)

The Advance Monthly Retail Sales for Retail and Food Services for September is scheduled to be released October 14, 2009 at 8:30 a.m. EDT.

For information, visit the Census Bureau's Web site at <http://www.census.gov/retail>. This report is also available the day of issue through the Department of Commerce's STAT-USA (202-482-1986).

* The 90 percent confidence interval includes zero. The Census Bureau does not have sufficient statistical evidence to conclude that the actual change is different than zero.


TABLE 1A. ESTIMATED MONTHLY SALES FOR RETAIL AND FOOD SERVICES, BY KIND OF BUSINESS--August 2009

Estimates adjusted for seasonal variations and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes. (Total sales estimates are shown in millions of dollars and are based on data from the Advance Monthly Retail Trade Survey, Monthly Retail Trade Survey, and administrative records.)(2) (In Millions of dollars) 2009 2009 2009 2008 2008 NAICS(1) Kind of Business Aug(3) Jul Jun Aug Jul Code (a) (p) (r) (r) (r) Retail & food services, total.................... 351,418 342,280 342,912 371,134 374,103 Total (excl. motor vehicle & parts)............ 287,197 284,191 285,670 306,263 310,890 Retail ....................................... 313,192 304,159 304,728 333,179 336,079 GAFO(4).......................................... (*) 92,227 92,560 97,010 98,629 441 Motor vehicle & parts dealers.................... 64,221 58,089 57,242 64,871 63,213 4411,4412 Auto & other motor veh. dealers................. 57,833 51,666 50,771 58,321 56,660 442 Furniture & home furnishings stores.............. 7,576 7,698 7,767 8,691 8,874 443 Electronics & appliance stores.................... 8,342 8,253 8,333 9,308 9,610 44311,13 Appl., T.V. & camera........................... (*) 6,465 6,508 7,421 7,664 44312 Computer & software stores...................... (*) 1,788 1,825 1,887 1,946 444 Building material & garden eq. & supplies dealers 23,387 23,674 24,102 27,076 27,637 4441 Building mat. & supplies dealers................ (*) 19,592 19,905 22,827 23,364 445 Food & beverage stores........................... 49,159 48,928 49,076 49,689 49,429 4451 Grocery stores.................................. 43,849 43,706 43,842 44,462 44,210 4453 Beer, wine & liquor stores...................... (*) 3,422 3,427 3,513 3,509 446 Health & personal care stores.................... 21,130 21,042 21,133 20,535 20,538 44611 Pharmacies & drug stores........................ (*) 17,512 17,561 16,979 16,973 447 Gasoline stations................................ 31,239 29,727 30,185 42,594 44,356 448 Clothing & clothing accessories stores........... 17,502 17,100 17,062 18,441 18,541 44811 Men's clothing stores........................... (*) (S) (S) (S) (S) 44812 Women's clothing stores......................... (*) 2,865 2,904 3,164 3,211 4482 Shoe stores..................................... (*) 2,154 2,132 2,310 2,305 451 Sporting goods, hobby, book & music stores....... 7,320 7,153 7,196 7,351 7,449 452 General merchandise stores....................... 49,635 48,843 48,976 49,967 50,784 4521 Department stores (ex. L.D.).................... 15,772 15,407 15,491 16,554 17,117 4521 Department stores (incl. L.D.)(5)............... (*) (NA) (NA) (NA) (NA) 4529 Other general merchandise stores................ (*) 33,436 33,485 33,413 33,667 45291 Warehouse clubs & supercenters................. (*) 29,596 29,633 29,653 29,836 45299 All other gen. merchandise stores.............. (*) 3,840 3,852 3,760 3,831 453 Miscellaneous store retailers.................... 9,464 9,448 9,441 9,783 10,156 454 Nonstore retailers............................... 24,217 24,204 24,215 24,873 25,492 4541 Electronic shopping & mail-order houses......... (*) 17,382 17,315 16,824 17,183 722 Food services & drinking places.................. 38,226 38,121 38,184 37,955 38,024 (*) Advance estimates are not available for this kind of business. (NA) Not available (S) Suppressed (a) Advance estimate (p) Preliminary estimate (r) Revised estimate (1) For a full description of the NAICS codes used in this table, see http://www.census.gov/eos/www/naics (2) Estimates are concurrently adjusted for seasonal variation and for holiday and trading day differences, but not for price changes. Concurrent seasonal adjustment uses all available unadjusted estimates as input to the X-12 ARIMA program. The factors derived from the program are used in calculating all seasonally adjusted estimates shown in this table. Year-to-date seasonally adjusted sales estimates are not tabulated. Adjustment factors and explanatory material can be found on the Internet at http://www.census.gov/retail (3) Advance estimates are based on early reports obtained from a small sample of firms selected from the larger Monthly Retail Trade Survey (MRTS) sample. All other estimates are from the MRTS sample. (4) GAFO represents firms which specialize in department store types of merchandise and is comprised of furniture & home furnishings (442), electronics & appliances (443), clothing & clothing accessories (448), sporting goods, hobby, book, and music (451), general merchandise (452), office supply, stationery, and gift stores (4532). (5) Estimates include data for leased departments operated within department stores. Data for this line are not included in broader kind-of-business totals.

TABLE 1B. ESTIMATED MONTHLY SALES FOR RETAIL AND FOOD SERVICES, BY KIND OF BUSINESS--August 2009

Estimates not adjusted for seasonal variations and holiday and trading-day differences and price changes. (In Millions of dollars and Annual Percent Change) 8 month total % Chg. 2009 2009 2009 2008 2008 NAICS(1) Kind of Business 2009 from Aug(2) Jul Jun Aug Jul Code 2008 (a) (p) (r) Retail & food services, total.................... 2,710,755 -9.1 362,278 354,438 351,418 384,798 385,909 Total (excl. motor vehicle & parts)............ 2,233,433 -7.2 292,178 289,719 289,242 314,306 315,525 Retail ....................................... 2,403,821 -10.2 322,599 314,640 312,547 344,528 346,516 GAFO(3).......................................... (*) (*) (*) 89,203 88,330 99,918 94,238 441 Motor vehicle & parts dealers.................... 477,322 -16.7 70,100 64,719 62,176 70,492 70,384 4411,4412 Auto & other motor veh. dealers................. 425,119 -18.4 63,501 57,866 55,239 63,687 63,346 44111 New car dealers................................ (*) (*) (*) 45,553 42,530 50,978 49,741 4413 Auto parts, acc. & tire stores.................. (*) (*) (*) 6,853 6,937 6,805 7,038 442 Furniture & home furnishings stores.............. 60,858 -13.7 7,894 8,006 7,728 9,143 9,122 4421 Furniture stores................................ (*) (*) (*) 4,247 4,148 5,007 4,754 4422 Home furnishings stores......................... (*) (*) (*) 3,759 3,580 4,136 4,368 443 Electronics & appliance stores.................... 63,724 -9.8 8,219 7,738 7,791 9,199 8,983 44311,13 Appl., T.V. & camera........................... (*) (*) (*) 6,077 6,085 7,354 7,158 44312 Computer & software stores...................... (*) (*) (*) 1,661 1,706 1,845 1,825 444 Building material & garden eq. & supplies dealers 196,579 -12.0 23,407 26,272 29,054 27,185 30,743 4441 Building mat. & supplies dealers................ (*) (*) (*) 21,982 23,010 23,786 26,214 445 Food & beverage stores........................... 388,586 -0.1 49,759 50,834 48,819 50,775 50,934 4451 Grocery stores.................................. 348,330 -0.5 44,507 45,323 43,579 45,440 45,536 4453 Beer, wine & liquor stores...................... (*) (*) (*) 3,682 3,437 3,647 3,691 446 Health & personal care stores.................... 166,970 3.0 20,707 20,895 21,070 20,165 20,312 44611 Pharmacies & drug stores........................ (*) (*) (*) 17,389 17,368 16,588 16,786 447 Gasoline stations................................ 233,327 -32.4 34,176 33,473 33,204 46,640 49,280 448 Clothing & clothing accessories stores........... 128,393 -6.6 17,927 16,285 15,717 19,049 17,377 44811 Men's clothing stores........................... (*) (*) (*) 678 730 749 710 44812 Women's clothing stores......................... (*) (*) (*) 2,627 2,840 3,069 2,906 44814 Family clothing stores.......................... (*) (*) (*) 6,632 6,020 7,562 7,024 4482 Shoe stores..................................... (*) (*) (*) 2,087 1,940 2,878 2,206 451 Sporting goods, hobby, book & music stores....... 54,145 -2.3 8,352 6,767 6,800 8,498 6,950 452 General merchandise stores....................... 375,710 -1.1 49,823 47,355 47,338 50,374 48,611 4521 Department stores (ex. L.D.).................... 114,486 -7.4 15,720 14,205 14,234 16,507 15,478 4521 Department stores (incl. L.D.)(4)............... (*) (*) (*) 14,574 14,594 17,009 15,937 4529 Other general merchandise stores................ (*) (*) (*) 33,150 33,104 33,867 33,133 45291 Warehouse clubs & supercenters................. (*) (*) (*) 29,448 29,337 30,276 29,448 45299 All other gen. merchandise stores.............. (*) (*) (*) 3,702 3,767 3,591 3,685 453 Miscellaneous store retailers.................... 74,041 -4.9 9,398 9,589 9,930 9,899 10,315 454 Nonstore retailers............................... 184,166 -4.5 22,837 22,707 22,920 23,109 23,505 4541 Electronic shopping & mail-order houses......... (*) (*) (*) 16,635 16,761 16,185 16,461 722 Food services & drinking places.................. 306,934 1.1 39,679 39,798 38,871 40,270 39,393 (*) Advance estimates are not available for this kind of business. (NA) Not available (a) Advance estimate (p) Preliminary estimate (r) Revised estimate (1) For a full description of the NAICS codes used in this table, see http://www.census.gov/eos/www/naics (2) Advance estimates are based on early reports obtained from a small sample of firms selected from the larger Monthly Retail Trade Survey (MRTS) sample. All other estimates are from the MRTS sample. (3) GAFO represents firms which specialize in department store types of merchandise and is comprised of furniture & home furnishings (442), electronics & appliances (443), clothing & clothing accessories (448), sporting goods, hobby, book, and music (451), general merchandise (452), office supply, stationery, and gift stores (4532). (4) Estimates include data for leased departments operated within department stores. Data for this line are not included in broader kind-of-business totals.

TABLE 2A. ESTIMATED CHANGE IN SALES FOR RETAIL AND FOOD SERVICES, BY KIND OF BUSINESS--August 2009

Estimates adjusted for seasonal variations and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes (Estimates are shown as percents and are based on data from the Advance Monthly Retail Trade Survey, Monthly Retail Trade Survey, and administrative records.)(*) Aug Jul 2009 2009 adv. prel. from-- from-- NAICS Kind of Business Jul Aug Jun Jul Code 2009 2008 2009 2008 (p) (r) (r) (r) Retail & food Services, total.................... +2.7 -5.3 -0.2 -8.5 Total (excl. motor vehicle & parts ).......... +1.1 -6.2 -0.5 -8.6 Retail .................................. +3.0 -6.0 -0.2 -9.5 441 Motor vehicle & parts dealers.................... +10.6 -1.0 +1.5 -8.1 4411,4412 Auto & other motor veh. dealers............... +11.9 -0.8 +1.8 -8.8 442 Furniture & home furnishings stores.............. -1.6 -12.8 -0.9 -13.3 443 Electronics & appliance stores................... +1.1 -10.4 -1.0 -14.1 444 Building material & garden eq. & supplies dealers -1.2 -13.6 -1.8 -14.3 445 Food & beverage stores........................... +0.5 -1.1 -0.3 -1.0 4451 Grocery stores.................................. +0.3 -1.4 -0.3 -1.1 446 Health & personal care stores.................... +0.4 +2.9 -0.4 +2.5 447 Gasoline stations................................ +5.1 -26.7 -1.5 -33.0 448 Clothing & clothing accessories stores........... +2.4 -5.1 +0.2 -7.8 451 Sporting goods, hobby, book & music stores........ +2.3 -0.4 -0.6 -4.0 452 General merchandise stores....................... +1.6 -0.7 -0.3 -3.8 4521 Department stores (ex. L.D.).................... +2.4 -4.7 -0.5 -10.0 453 Miscellaneous stores retailers................... +0.2 -3.3 +0.1 -7.0 454 Nonstore retailers............................... +0.1 -2.6 0.0 -5.1 722 Food services & drinking places.................. +0.3 +0.7 -0.2 +0.3 (p) Preliminary estimate (r) Revised estimate (*) Estimates shown in this table are derived from adjusted estimates provided in Table 1A of this report.

TABLE 2B. ESTIMATED CHANGE IN SALES FOR RETAIL AND FOOD SERVICES, BY KIND OF BUSINESS--August 2009

Data not adjusted for seasonal variations and holiday and trading-day differences and price changes. (Estimates are shown as percents and are based on data from the Advance Monthly Retail Trade Survey, Monthly Retail Trade Survey, and administrative records.)(*) Aug Jul 2009 2009 adv. prel. from-- from-- NAICS Kind of Business Jul Aug Jun Jul Code 2009 2008 2009 2008 (p) (r) (r) (r) Retail & food Services, total.................... +2.2 -5.9 +0.9 -8.2 Total (excl. motor vehicle & parts ).......... +0.8 -7.0 +0.2 -8.2 Retail .................................. +2.5 -6.4 +0.7 -9.2 441 Motor vehicle & parts dealers.................... +8.3 -0.6 +4.1 -8.0 4411,4412 Auto & other motor veh. dealers................ +9.7 -0.3 +4.8 -8.7 442 Furniture & home furnishings stores.............. -1.4 -13.7 +3.6 -12.2 443 Electronics & appliance stores................... +6.2 -10.7 -0.7 -13.9 444 Building material & garden eq. & supplies dealers -10.9 -13.9 -9.6 -14.5 445 Food & beverage stores........................... -2.1 -2.0 +4.1 -0.2 4451 Grocery stores.................................. -1.8 -2.1 +4.0 -0.5 446 Health & personal care stores.................... -0.9 +2.7 -0.8 +2.9 447 Gasoline stations................................ +2.1 -26.7 +0.8 -32.1 448 Clothing & clothing accessories stores........... +10.1 -5.9 +3.6 -6.3 451 Sporting goods, hobby, book & music stores........ +23.4 -1.7 -0.5 -2.6 452 General merchandise stores....................... +5.2 -1.1 0.0 -2.6 4521 Department stores (ex. L.D.).................... +10.7 -4.8 -0.2 -8.2 453 Miscellaneous stores retailers................... -2.0 -5.1 -3.4 -7.0 454 Nonstore retailers............................... +0.6 -1.2 -0.9 -3.4 722 Food services & drinking places.................. -0.3 -1.5 +2.4 +1.0 (p) Preliminary estimate (r) Revised estimate (*) Estimates shown in this table are derived from not adjusted estimates provided in Table 1B of this report.
SOURCE: Advance Monthly Sales for Retail Trade and Food Services--AUGUST 2009 (Press Release available without charge from Public Information Office, Bureau of the Census Washington, D.C. 20233). Survey methodology and measures of sampling variability are documented in the Advance Press Release. Questions concerning this report should be directed to Mr. Timothy Winters (301) 763-2713.

Survey Description

The U.S. Census Bureau conducts the Advance Monthly Retail Trade and Food Services Survey (MARTS) to provide an early estimate of monthly sales by kind of business for retail and food service firms located in the United States. Each month, questionnaires are mailed to a probability sample of approximately 5,000 employer firms selected from the larger Monthly Retail Trade Survey (MRTS). Firms responding to MARTS account for approximately 65% of the total national sales estimate. Advance sales estimates are computed using a link relative estimator. The change in sales from the previous month is estimated using only units that have reported data for both the current and previous month. There is no imputation or adjustment for nonrespondents in MARTS. The total sales estimate is derived by multiplying this ratio by the preliminary sales estimate for the previous month (derived from the larger MRTS sample). Detailed industry estimates are summed to derive total estimates at broad industry levels. The monthly estimates are adjusted using annual survey estimates and for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences. Additional information on MARTS and MRTS can be found on the Census Bureau website at: http://www.census.gov/retail.

Reliability of Estimates

Because the estimates presented in this report are based on a sample survey, they contain sampling error and nonsampling error. Sampling error is the difference between the estimate and the result that would be obtained from a complete enumeration of the sampling frame conducted under the same survey conditions. This error occurs because only a subset of the entire sampling frame is measured in a sample survey. Standard errors and coefficients of variation (CV), as given in Table 3 of this report, are estimated measures of sampling variation. The margin of sampling error, as used on page 1, gives a range about the estimate which is 90-percent confidence interval. If, for example, the percent change estimate is +1.2 percent and its estimated standard error is 0.9 percent, then the margin of sampling error is 1.65 x 0.9 percent or 1.5 percent, and the 90 percent confidence interval is -0.3 percent to +2.7 percent. If the interval contains 0, then one does not have sufficient statistical evidence to conclude at the 90 percent confidence level that the change is different from zero and therefore the change is not statistically significant. Estimated changes shown in the text are statistically significant unless otherwise noted. For a monthly total, the median estimated coefficient of variation is given. The resulting confidence interval is the estimated value 1.65 x CV x (the estimated monthly total). The Census Bureau recommends that individuals using estimates in this report incorporate this information into their analyses, as sampling error could affect the conclusions drawn from the estimates. Nonsampling error encompasses all other factors that contribute to the total error of a sample survey estimate. This type of error can occur because of nonresponse, insufficient coverage of the universe of retail businesses, mistakes in the recording and coding of data, and other errors of collection, response, coverage, or processing. Although nonsampling error is not measured directly, the Census Bureau employs quality control procedures throughout the process to minimize this type of error.


(1) Estimated measures of sampling variability are based on estimates not adjusted for seasonal variation, or holiday, or trading-day differences. Medians are based on estimates for the most recent 12 months.

(2) These columns provide measures of the difference between the advance-to-preliminary and preliminary-to-final estimates of month-to-month change for the same pair of months as measured by the Advance sample and MRTS sample. The average and median differences are based on estimates for the most recent 12 months.

Note: Additional information on confidentiality protection, sampling error, nonsampling error, sample design, and definitions may be found at http://www.census.gov/retail
o Current Quarter Retail E-Commerce Sales

Source: Retail Indicators Branch, U.S. Census Bureau | Last Revised: September 15, 2009