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Michigan Retailers Expect Good Holiday Sales


October 27, 2011 - Lansing, MI

Nearly nine of 10 Michigan retailers expect a holiday season as good or better than last year, with more than one in three projecting their sales will rise by more than 5 percent, according to the latest Michigan Retail Index survey conducted by Michigan Retailers Association (MRA) and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

On average, retailers are forecasting a 6 percent gain for their businesses during the holiday season.

"Michigan's retail industry is generally upbeat as it prepares for the holiday season," said MRA President and CEO James P. Hallan. "Last year snapped a string of poor holiday data, and most retailers fully expect additional gains this year."

The survey showed that 54 percent expect to increase sales (35 percent of respondents by more than 5 percent and 19 percent by 5 percent or less) and 35 percent foresee no change from last year.

The International Council of Shopping Centers and National Retail Federation separately predict total U.S. retail sales will climb 2.8 percent or less for the holidays.

Michigan retailers' projections came during a month of continued sales growth.

The Michigan Retail Index for September found that 46 percent of retailers increased sales over the same month last year, while 36 percent recorded declines and 18 percent saw no change. The results create a seasonally adjusted performance index of 57.9, up from 55.9 in August and 53.6 in July.

Index values above 50 generally indicate an increase in overall retail activity.

Looking forward, 45 percent of retailers expect sales during October-December to increase over the same period last year, while 24 percent project a decrease and 31 percent no change. That puts the seasonally adjusted outlook index at 61.4, up from 61.1 in July.

Nationally, the U.S. Commerce Department reported that retail sales rose 1.1 percent in September.

Note: William Strauss, Senior Economist and Economic Advisor with the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, can be reached at 312.322.8151.

Michigan Retail Index
September 2011 results
Index figures dating to July 1994 are available at http://www.retailers.com/mra/news/michigan-retail-index.html

September Performance
Retailers reporting increased, decreased or unchanged sales, inventory, prices, promotions and hiring compared to the same month a year ago
(numbers in parentheses indicate August results)


% Increased % Decreased % No Change Index* Responses
Sales 46 (46) 36 (29) 18 (25) 57.9 (55.9) 120 (106)
Inventory 31 (27) 26 (30) 43 (43) 52.4 (42.7) 117 (106)
Prices 33 (31) 3 (7) 64 (62) 65.1 (60.2) 117 (106)
Promotions 29 (24) 3 (4) 68 (72) 66.1 (62.0) 117 (106)
Hiring 12 (11) 7 (11) 81 (78) 52.8 (49.6) 117 (106)

Outlook for Next 3 Months
Retailers expecting increased, decreased or unchanged sales, inventory, prices, promotions and hiring compared to the same period a year ago
(numbers in parentheses indicate August results)

 % Increased % Decreased % No Change Index* ResponsesSales 45 (49) 24 (15) 31 (25) 61.4 (55.9) 120 (106)Inventory 27 (30) 26 (19) 47 (43) 52.2 (42.7) 117 (106)Prices 33 (22) 4 (8) 63 (62) 65.4 (60.2) 116 (106)Promotions 33 (34) 2 (4) 65 (72) 64.8 (62.0) 116 (106)Hiring 11 (11) 4 (8) 85 (78) 52.0 (49.6) 116 (106)

September Sales Performance & Outlook for Next 3 Months, by Region
(the first number indicates sales performance for the month; the number in parentheses indicates outlook for the next three months)

 % Increased % Decreased % No ChangeNorth 35 (24) 41 (41) 24 (35)West 33 (33) 43 (24) 24 (43)Central 74 (80) 13 (13) 13 (7)East 50 (40) 40 (20) 10 (40)Southeast 54 (62) 42 (11) 4 (27)

Question of the Month
What is your current expectation for your percentage sales increase or decrease, compared to last year, for the holiday season?

Increase more than 5% 35% Increase 5% or less 19% Same 35%Decrease 5% or less 7% Decrease more than 5% 3%Average Change +6%

*Seasonally adjusted diffusion index. A diffusion index, which is the sum of the percent of respondents indicating increase and half the percent indicating no change, is calculated and then seasonally adjusted using the U.S. Census Bureau's X-11 Seasonal Adjustment procedure. Index values above 50 generally indicate an increase in activity, while values below 50 indicate a decrease.

Michigan Retailers Holiday Sales Forecasts/Results

Season Pre-season forecast Post-season result % members average% % members average% expecting sales change achieving sales change sales increase sales increase2011 54 +6.02010 58 +6.0 76 +11.02009 38 -1.0 43 ****2008 37 -1.2 45 ***2007 52 +2.2 35 **2006 50 +4.5 39 *2005 51 + 5 39 -1.92004 63 + 7 37 0.892003 67 + 5 45 0.32002 57 + 4 28 -3.22001 49 + 6 45 3.32000 62 + 9 25 0.01999 75 +11 56 +5.91998 74 +10 62 +8.21997 74 +12 63 +8.11996 75 +13 46 +5.41995 78 +12 42 +1.91994 78 +11 68 +12.0

Source: Michigan Retail Index, a joint project of the Michigan Retailers Association and Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

**** 2009: 26% greater than 5% sales gain; 17 percent less than or equal to 5% gain; 17% no change; 24 percent less than or equal to 5% decline; 15% greater than 5% decline.

*** 2008: 27.4% greater than 5% sales gain; 17.2% less than or equal to 5% gain; 7.8% no change;
11.7% percent less than or equal to 5% decline; 35.9% greater than 5% decline.

** 2007: 19.7% greater than 5% sales gain; 14.8% less than or equal to 5% gain; 16.4% no change;
18 percent less than or equal to 5% decline; 31.1% greater than 5% decline.

* 2006: 23.1% greater than 5% sales gain; 15.9% less than or equal to 5% gain; 10.4% no change; 16.5% less than or equal to 5% decline; 34.1% greater than 5% decline.

Contact:
Tom Scott
517.372.5656
Email Contact

MarketWire

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