U.S Retail Sales Declined by 0.3% in October – November Report

Retails and foods services sales changed direction from last month and declined by 0.3% in October 2012 compared with September’s sales but were above the sales at October 2011. This news may have contributed to the rise in gold and silver prices.  

The U.S. Department of Commerce published today its monthly update on the shifts in the U.S. retail and food sales for October 2012.

This report adjusts for seasonal variances and holidays but doesn’t control for price movement. In October, the U.S. retail and food sales reached $411.6 billion, which is 0.3% below the sales in September but 3.8% above October 2011. The gasoline stations sales were up by 1.4% in October compared to September and by 7.7% compared to October 2011. Total sales of gasoline in January – October 2012 reached $460.9 billion (not adjusted for seasonality) – an increase of 4.3% compared to the first ten months of 2011.

This shows a moderate fall in the U.S demand for retail but a rise in demand for energy commodities.

If the demand for gasoline will continue to rise, it could signal progress of the U.S economy and thus may pull up the prices of oil prices. Conversely, the recent fall in the retail sales might suggest the U.S economy isn’t progressing and thus may eventually influence the Fed’s decision on whether it should intervene again in the U.S market to help jump-start the economy. Therefore, this news may have contributed to the rise in the prices of precious metals.

The major energy commodities prices rose today; the major exchange rates such as the Euro US dollar also increased. This means the news of the modest rise in gasoline stations sales may have had a moderate positive effect on energy rates.

Current Nymex crude oil price, short term futures (December 2012 delivery) is traded up by 1% to $86.23 per barrel as of 20:55*.

Euro to US dollar exchange rate is currently traded down to 1.2735, a 0.24% increase as of 20:55*.

Current gold price, short term futures (December 2012 delivery) is traded at $1,726 per t oz. a $2 increase as of 20:55*.

(* GMT)

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