Consumers sprang into action and gave retailers a solid week of sales as warmer weather helped to lift seasonal demand, especially in the East and Midwest.
As a result, weekly retail sales rose sharply by 1.6% for the week ending on April 26, 2014, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs Weekly Chain Store Sales Index.
On a year-over-year basis, sales also improved with a gain of 3.1%. This marks the strongest increase since September 14, 2013 (+3.2%).
"Sales posted a healthy sequential and year-over-year gain as a bout of warmer-than-normal weather helped to lift seasonal demand," said Michael Niemira, ICSC vice president of research and chief economist. "Moreover, despite the Easter Sunday store closures, business was brisk across the board for retailers over the past week. The ICSC-Goldman Sachs consumer tracking survey suggested that business was especially robust relative to the prior year's week for wholesale clubs, with strong performance for apparel, dollar and drug stores, as well," Niemira added.
For the month of April as a whole, ICSC Research forecasts that monthly comparable-store sales will increase by a healthy 3.5% to 4.0%.