CIBC Research discusses its reaction to today's US retail sales for the month of December.
"Retail sales fell sharply in the US in December, with the 1.1% retreat slightly below the consensus expectation for a 0.9% decline. That included plummeting auto sales, and lower receipts at gas stations as prices fell, but that also included a 0.7% decrease in the control group of sales (excluding autos, gasoline, restaurants, and building materials), which feeds more directly into non-auto goods consumption in GDP," CIBC notes.
"That was well below the consensus expectation of -0.3% for that group, and shows that consumers are becoming increasingly cautious about spending on discretionary items amidst higher interest rates, although some of that drop reflects lower prices that have been on offer due to bloated inventory levels. Adding to the downside was a negative revision to the prior month, which now shows a 1.0% drop in total sales vs. -0.6% previously, although the control group was unchanged," CIBC adds.