US retail sales lower expectations for rate hikes

15th September 2015 By: Ranko Berich

US Retail Sales – 15/09/15

The US economy’s modest but consistent expansion has weakened somewhat recently, and today’s retail sales data follows this trend. Year-on-year sales grew at a respectable 2.2 per cent, but much of this was held down by a contraction in petrol station sales due to lower energy prices.

Despite the fact that retail sales are still growing at an acceptable rate, there is no denying that growth appears to have slowed compared to last year. This is a trend being observed in other parts of the economy as well, particularly the manufacturing sector.

These results place even more attention on the outcome of Thursday’s FOMC meeting. There’s now no denying that activity in the US economy has cooled slightly in recent months. Considering how keen the FOMC is on making data-driven decisions, it’s quite possible that slowing growth will prompt downgrades to forecasts and, as a result, expectations for monetary policy action.