US retail sales decline due to relaxation of restrictive measures

According to the statistics of the US Department of Commerce released today, June 15, in May, retail sales decreased by 1.3% compared to the previous month. Back in April, there was an increase of 0.9%, and in March – an increase of 11.3%. Researchers attribute the decline in retail spending to Americans by easing quarantine measures, which is pushing demand from goods to services, including travel.

The US Department of Commerce notes that in May, for the first time in three months, Americans’ spending on such popular categories of goods during quarantine as building materials and garden equipment (minus 5.9%), electronics (minus 3.9%) and furniture (minus 2 ,one%). At the same time, expenses for catering establishments (plus 1.8%), gasoline (plus 0.7%) and clothing (plus 3%) increased. Earlier, the US Transportation Safety Board reported that at the end of May, passenger traffic at US airports increased five to six times compared to the same period last year.

Another reason for the decline in retail sales is the weakening of the factor of financial stimulation of the consumer economy – people have already spent a significant part of the funds allocated by the US government in March. As part of this package, adult US citizens received a check from the government for $ 1,400. The package also included payments of $ 300 per week in the form of extended unemployment benefits for 9.5 million people who were left out of work during the crisis. In addition, $ 350 billion was channeled in aid to state and local governments.

Evgeny Khvostik

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