Furniture posts slight increase in flat July for retail

July sales were relatively flat according to the Department of Commerce’s advance monthly estimates, while furniture and home furnishings rose slightly.

WASHINGTON — Furniture and home furnishings sales rose slightly in July in what was a flat month overall for retail, according to advance monthly estimates from the Department of Commerce.

The furniture and home furnishings category recorded an adjusted $12.122 billion in July, up 0.2% from  June’s $12.1 billion. But while sales in the category were relatively flat month-to-month, they were up 2.1% from July 2021’s $11.873 billion. For the year-to-date, furniture and home furnishings sales are at $81.913 billion.

In the overall snapshot, the full retail spectrum came in at $682.815 billion in July, which was basically even with June’s $682.585 billion. Year-over-year, retail was up 10.3% compared with July 2021’s $619.180 billion.

Very few categories recorded substantial growth in July, but non-store retailers led the way with a 2.7% increase vs. June. Building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers and miscellaneous store retailers were both up 1.5% month-to-month.

Those gains were offset by a few notable losses. Gas station sales declined 1.8% as prices dropped, while motor vehicle and parts dealers saw their sales drop by 1.6%. General merchandise stores were down 0.7%, and clothing and clothing accessories stores sales fell 0.6%.

The DOC’s advance estimates are based on a sub-sample of the U.S. Census Bureau’s full retail and food services sample. A stratified random sampling method is used to select approximately 5,500 retail and food services firms whose sales are then weighted and benchmarked to represent the complete universe of more than 3 million retail and food services firms.

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Thomas Lester is Retail Editor for Furniture Today and Digital/Managing Editor for Home Accents Today. A graduate of Emory & Henry College’s Mass Communications program, Lester spent a dozen years working for newspapers in Virginia and North Carolina covering an array of subjects, ranging from community news, government, education, ACC sports, professional baseball and more before joining Furniture Today in 2013. Reach out to me with your story ideas, tips and more at tlester@furnituretoday.com.

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