Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for December 2009 - adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes - were $353.0 billion.
1) a decrease of 0.3% (±0.5%)* from November 2009
2) a 5.4% (±0.5%) increase from December 2008.
* 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.
Total sales for 2009:
Total sales for the 12 months of 2009 were down 6.2 percent (±0.2%) from 2008.
Total sales for the October through December 2009 period were up 1.9 percent (±0.3%) from the same period a year ago.
The October to November 2009 percent change was revised from +1.3 percent (±0.5%) to +1.8 percent (±0.2%).
Retail Trade Sales
Retail trade sales were down 0.2 percent (±0.5%)* from November 2009, but 5.9 percent (±0.5%) above last year.
Gasoline stations sales were up 33.6 percent (±1.5%) from December 2008 and nonstore retailers sales were up 10.3 percent (±1.7%) from last year.
Note: 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.
The Advance Monthly Retail Sales for Retail and Food Services for January is scheduled to be released February 11, 2010 at 8:30 a.m. EST.