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ShopperTrak: Retail sales up 4.5% in July

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Chicago Following three consecutive months of declines, consumer foot traffic was flat for July as the 2010 calendar shift moved July 4 to Sunday, providing another full day of spending on the following Monday as most shoppers took advantage of an extra day off. GAFO sales also performed well for the month as July 4 promotions and hot weather experienced through most of the country boosted spending for seasonal, summer merchandise.

“Our data shows retailers experienced a slight, somewhat unexpected spending uptick in sales and traffic performance in July -- a month which is traditionally slower as consumers gear up for the August back-to-school spending rush,” said Bill Martin, co-founder of ShopperTrak.

The weather contributed to this positive performance, according to Martin, as consumers visited various retail locations to purchase summer clothing, driving the Apparel & Accessories segmented store traffic up a strong 6.4% as compared with June.

“We expect August will fare very well as pent-up demand will drive back-to-school shopping, a spending period second only to the November/December holiday season,” Martin said.

ShopperTrak predicted a 1.4% traffic decline with a 3.5% retail sales increase for the back-to-school season.

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