The economy is not doing that great as the National Retail Federation (NRF) lowered its retail sales forecast for 2014. However, sales are expected to grow significantly faster over the next five months.
NRF forecasted in January that retail sales would grow 4.1% in 2014 over 2013, but today’s revision lowers the forecast to 3.6%.
The NRF calculated that sales grew 2.9% during the first half of the year and are expected to grow at least 3.9% during the second half. The numbers include general retail sales and non-store sales, and exclude automobiles, gasoline stations, and restaurants.
The NRF says no retailer was immune to the doldrums witnessed during the first quarter, and as a result, the year’s growth trajectory was impacted. Furthermore, the severe weather and other factors we experienced earlier this year have taken their toll on retail, but most of those problems are behind us, says the NRF.
Nevertheless, the NRF maintains realistic expectations of retail sales growth in 2014 and remain optimistic that the chances for a stronger economy still exist.
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