APT Index: August Same-Store Retail Sales Up 0.3%, 25% Higher Sales Performance During Tax Free Weekends

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Shoppers Spend $1 Billion More This August Than Prior August

Applied Predictive Technologies (APT) today announced that U.S. same-store retail sales were up [+0.3%] in August. Americans spent $305 billion at retail stores during the month, up $1 billion from August of last year.

The APT Index includes a subset of APT’s $2 trillion in sales data, or $1 of every $5 of U.S. retail sales. The Index aggregates data from sales registers at over 65,000 locations across the U.S. to show how year-over-year performance changes for same-store sales in the physical channel. Unlike other sources, which use consumer survey data, the APT Index is based on reported sales data, allowing APT to make statistically significant observations about retail sales. As a result, the APT Index provides the most definitive and accurate analysis of sales available.

Tax Free Weekend Sales:

The APT Index revealed interesting findings about Tax Free Weekends, which a number of states offered during the back-to-school season. Comparing 2014 retail sales during each Tax Free Weekend to average weekend sales, the APT Index showed that sales during Tax Free Weekends were 25% higher than what would have normally been expected.

Highest Performing States

  • Massachusetts: 63% sales increase during the Tax Free Weekend
  • Tennessee: 43% sales increase during the Tax Free Weekend
  • New Mexico: 34% sales increase during the Tax Free Weekend
  • Arkansas: 32% sales increase during the Tax Free Weekend
  • Alabama: 31% sales increase during the Tax Free Weekend

Overall August Retail Sales:

Overall nationwide same-store retail sales were up [+0.3%] in August, due to an increase in dollars per transaction [+0.8%]. Performance was better in areas with less rainfall and where median income was less than $75K, median age was less than 35, and median household size was 2.5 persons or more.

Rainfall (Days)

  • In areas where it rained 5 days or less, retail sales increased [+0.9%]
  • In areas where it rained more than 5 days, retail sales increased [+0.1%]

Median Income

  • In areas with median income less than $75K, retail sales increased [+0.6%]
  • In areas with median income $75K or greater, retail sales decreased [-0.4%]

Median Age

  • In areas with median age less than 35, retail sales increased [+1.3%]
  • In areas with median age greater than 35, retail sales decreased [-0.1%]

Median Household Size

  • In areas with median household size 2.5 or more, retail sales increased [+0.8%]
  • In areas with median household size less than 2.5, retail sales increased [+0.1%]

Retail sales also varied among the Top 25 metro areas in August. The metro areas where retailers performed the best were: Denver, CO with a [+4.2%] increase in sales; Houston, TX [+3.0%]; and Riverside, CA [+2.7%]. The areas where retailers performed the worst were: New York, NY [-2.6%], St. Louis, MO [-1.5%], and Boston, MA [-1.4%].

[All figures are a year-over-year, same-store comparison from August 2014 to August 2013, adjusted for consistent weekdays.]

Anthony Bruce, CEO of APT, said, “The APT Index allows us to understand both how the economy and local markets, including states and very specific geographic areas, are performing. We saw that same-store sales in August were up 0.3% overall. The APT Index also enables us to quantify the immediate impact on retail sales from Tax Free Weekends.”

Bruce added, “Using the APT Index, we can provide the industry’s most definitive same-store sales data at the macro level and at a very granular geographic level. The APT Index enables us to give retail executives benchmarks for each of their store locations based on nearby locations, making the APT Index one of the most robust and accurate ways for executives to answer important questions. For example, executives are able to better assign manager rewards and set performance goals by using the APT Index to understand what performance should be, given what’s happening in the local area. Executives are showing a lot of excitement about using the APT Index to answer mission critical questions.”

For more information, visit: http://www.predictivetechnologies.com.

About APT

APT is the world’s largest purely cloud-based predictive analytics software company. APT’s Test & Learn software is revolutionizing the way Global 2000 companies harness their Big Data to accurately measure the profit impact of pricing, marketing, merchandising, operations, and capital initiatives, tailoring investments in these areas to maximize ROI. APT’s client portfolio includes Walmart, Staples, Lowe’s, SunTrust, Hilton Hotels, and others. APT has offices in Washington, D.C., San Francisco, London, Taipei, and Tokyo. Visit http://www.predictivetechnologies.com to learn more.

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Cathy Baker
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