US Retail Sales Dives But USD Remains Stable

Andrew  Saks

Strangely, the easing of the draconian lockdowns across the United States has not amounted to stronger retail sales, perhaps due to the amount of online shopping that has taken place.

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US Retail Sales Data

In April this year, sales were up 51.2% over the previous April. However, month-on-month, there was no difference.

Total sales for February through April were up 27.1% year-on-year, until falling by 1.3% in the figures announced today for May this year.

Market Impact

As a result of the announcement, the US Dollar Index has climbed by a small amount to just over 90.6, and the GBP/USD currency pair is stable at 1.41, identical to yesterday's figure.

Some analysts consider the drop to be partly attributable to retail customers running out of savings, having spent them during the lockdowns which bolstered retail figures even at a time of economic contraction, and during which many Americans were unable to go to their place of work and conduct normal remuneration-earning activities.

Thus, the lockdowns may be over in some states, but there is less money to spend at the mall.

The EUR/USD is down to 1.2120 over its value yesterday, which represented a spike compared to its steady performance for the past month, but it is still higher than it has been in June where it has languished at around the low 1.21 mark.

Either way, that does not represent volatility, regardless of the lower US retail figures.

Optimistic View of US Economic Outlook

There is an overall optimistic view, however, and the National Retail Federation put its overall estimate for the year out last week, estimating that the nation's growth in retail sales during the entire course of 2021 will be 0.5% and 13.5% at a value of 4.44 trillion and $4.56 trillion, from its previous estimates, issued in February, of between 6.5% and 8.2%, or more than $4.33 trillion.

The National Retail Federation also consider that US GDP growth could approach 7% in 2021, higher than the 4.4% and 5% projected earlier this year.

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Andrew  Saks

Andrew Saks is 30 year veteran of the FX industry, and is Head of Research and Analysis at ETX Capital. He was formerly CEO and Co-Founder of FinanceFeeds, Managing Editor at LeapRate and Editor at Forex Magnates as well as having run his own software engineering consultancy for 18 years which focused on infrastructure for banks and financial institutions.

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