NEW YORK - The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index was up 3.4% in the fourth and final week of February following a 2.9% gain in the prior week.

Month-to-date, February was up 2.9% compared to February of last year (relative to a target of a 2.8% gain). Month-over-month showed a 1.6% gain compared to January (relative to a target of a 1.5% gain).

“President's Day sales offered opportunities to clear remaining winter inventories,” according to the report. “Retailers said that sales in the final week of February held up better with warmer weather. The department store segment picked up, partly the result of holiday promotions. Retailers are optimistic to see that early business in spring apparel is moving at full price in addition to other seasonal categories. The month closed slightly ahead of its targets.”


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