Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Total Retail and E-Commerce Sales Q1 2000 - Q2 2008

Total retail sales and total e-commerce sales have been leveling off, since Q2 2006 for straight retail and since Q4 2007 for e-commerce. So, the e-commerce slow down has lagged the retail sales slow down by six quarters, but it is finally here. Q1 2008 e-commerce retail sales were up only .3% from the previous quarter and retail sales were up only .2% quarter over quarter. In Q2 2008 total retail sales were up just .9% from Q1 2008, but e-commerce sales did better, up 2.9% from Q1 2008. Still, e-commerce sales growth has sunk to its lowest level since the recession of 2001 when sales fell .5% in Q2 2001.

Total Retail E-Commerce Sales Change, Quarter-over-Quarter

Source: US Census Bureau

Total e-Commerce Sales by Quarter

Source: US Census Bureau

Total Retail Sales by Quarter

Source: US Census Bureau

The Commerce Department reported that retail sales in August were weak across the board, falling .3% from July. This despite lower gas prices which left more discretionary income in consumers' pockets. The continued crisis in financial markets, the housing bust, disappearing credit, and higher unemployment with attendant uncertainties continue to be a drag on consumers' spirits.

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