Better than expected U.S. Retail Sales
The debt crisis seems not to prevent holiday shoppers to acquire already the first gifts for Christmas and therefore the October retail and food sales increased by 0.5 % against September to an adjusted USD 397.67 billion, already in September the gain was 1.1%. However it was not the stationary retailers benefitting of this attitude with the exception of electronic stores (+3.7 %) but the growth stemmed from Internet sales. Also the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer confidence index improves actually from 60.9 points in October to 64.2 points in November. Also auto and gasoline sales were up 0.7 % in October reflecting the biggest increase over seven months. Executives from Kohl’s department stores predict gains in the last quarter of 2011 by 2 to 4 % and further profit increases, in the third quarter this figure amounted to +20%.
On the other hand wholesale inflation slowed and fell seasonally adjusted by 0.3 % for finished goods in October as against September. In September there was still a price increase of 0.8 %, however wholesale prices were still 5.9 % higher than in the same month of last year and in comparison consumer prices rose in September on an annual basis by 3.9%, the October figure is not yet known. Clothing prices dropped in October as well as raw material prices (-2.5 %) after a rise of 2.8 % in September.