RAPAPORT... U.S. chain-store sales in June rose by only 0.2 percent year on year, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC). The group had lowered its outlook for the month, however, volatile consumer buying trends ultimately led to a much weaker than expected data.
Michael P. Niemira, the vice president of research and chief economist for ICSC, said that weather provided a drag on comparable-store performance as well but some retailers pointed to broader economic uncertainty. ''Of course, the slower sales pace was not consistent across all segments as some retailers did quite well, leading to an uneven overall performance for the industry,'' he added.
Luxury retail stores experienced a 7.6 percent year on year increase, but wholesale clubs where negatively impacted by declining gasoline prices.