A delayed report outlining retail sales in December was released Thursday, and it showed sales around the holiday season tumbled 1.2% — its largest decline in almost a decade.
UPI reported that the Census Bureau report said the drop was comparable to September 2009, a few months into the Great Recession. The figures indicate retailers faced a stock market decline, the start of the partial government shutdown and poor weather conditions.
The report had been delayed because of the 35-day federal shutdown.
“Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for December 2018 were $505.8 billion, a decrease of 1.2% but 2.3% above December 2017,” the report said.
The report said total sales for 2018 were up 5% and sales from October through December increased 3.7%, year-to-year.
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