A new release of Census Bureau
data shows that monthly U.S. retail sales fell for the first time in seven months in September, dropping by 0.3 percentage points. Analysts worry that the weaknesses in the supply-side of the economy may be seeping into consumer spending. Households last month spent less on building materials, e-commerce
, and cars.
This past month analysts polled by Reuters projected retails sales to grow by 0.3 percent, instead of falling by that number. Those analysts saw a continuation of a months-long trend of moderate growth. Despite some concerns, year-over-year retail sales have grown by 4.1 percent. These are preliminary numbers and may be revised later.
Consumer spending drives about two-thirds of the movement in U.S. GDP, making it a vital part of nationwide economic growth. According to Q2 numbers, the economy increased at a rate of 2.0 percent, a drop of about a percentage point from the first quarter of the year and a dip from the 4.1 percentage growth seen year-over-year.