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Big Miss In Retail Sales Paints Grim Picture For Holiday Shopping

Tyler Durden's picture


Here we go with the "but, but, Sandy" excuses. The just announced October retail sales tumbled, with their worst miss of expectations since May 2010, and the first sequential decline since June: printing at -0.3% for both the headline and the 'ex autos and gas', on expectations of a -0.2% and +0.4% rise. Ignoring for a second that the Commerce Department said that Hurricane Sandy had both positive (remember those massive lines in various stores ahead of Sandy) and negative impacts on retail sales, it would be truly inconceivable for the sellside Wall Street consensus of diploma'ed PhDs, which knew about Sandy's impact on retail sales well in advance, and thus could adjust its numbers, to actually, you know, adjust its numbers. Either way there is no way to spin the longer term major store sales trend (last chart), which shows that the US consumer, out of money, out of credit, and out of savings is entering the holiday season with little to zero disposable spending power.

A sequential decline in virtually everything except General Merchandise sales:

Breakdown by category: oops on cars and building materials:

The biggest miss to expectations for core retail sales since 2010:

Finally, the only chart that matters: the long-term trend in true sales. Not pretty:


And in other news, PPI printed a decline of -0.2% - the first drop since May - on expectations of a 0.2% print and up from 1.1%, on sliding energy costs, even as food PPI was up 0.4%.

The evil, evil deflation is once again coming back, which is good: at least what little money US consumers have will have slightly more purchasing power. At least until the Fed starts outright monetizing $85 billion in total securities starting January.


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Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:47 | 2979409 TeamDepends
TeamDepends's picture

Can't wait to see the "Electric Winter Tree" in D.C. as we celebrate Kwanza like we always have.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:54 | 2979435 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



Right after the sacrifices.....we get to open presents that we're going to send to someone else. I can't wait.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:07 | 2979478 rustymason
rustymason's picture

A donation will be made in your name to the Human Fund.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:09 | 2979482 Manthong
Manthong's picture

Dont forget the ornaments for the Kwanzaa shrub.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:46 | 2979651 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

Toy Mfg's are trying to make a comeback:


Trickle Me POMO; a Fed favorite

Barbie’s “Repossed Malibu Condo”

Tonka Toys Ride-on Bulldozer – Detroit Edition

Freeby; formerly Furby; rubbing it’s belly replenishes your EBT card

Apple’s iBamaphone; teleprompter app, automatically blocks calls to Papa Jon’s & Chick-fil-a, iShaniqua voice-changing app for crank calling GOP HQ.

Mr. Bo-tato Head; now with larger ears

Play Dough – Fed Edition; nuff said

Scramble – Benghazi Edition; by the makers of Foreign Policy

Match Box – ‘Real’ Housewives; carpet meet shades


Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:12 | 2979489 TeamDepends
TeamDepends's picture

Instead of a lump of coal in your stocking you'll find an Obama phone.  But not the one you are accustomed to.  No, this will be Obamaphone 2.0:  a one-way line from Barry's mouth to your ear.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:16 | 2979503 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

We're going with 'Festivus' again this year, I'll cream my uncle in the 'Feats of Strength' I'm going to tip over his wheelchair.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:30 | 2979782 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

And then run him over with your government financed GM truck.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:48 | 2979412 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

The bernank will give bankers another bonus based upon this news.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:48 | 2979414 jomama
jomama's picture

they must have thought the mayans were right and blew their load prior?

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:49 | 2979415 warchopper
warchopper's picture

But, but, after people recover from Sandy, they will release their pent up consumer demand.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:53 | 2979432 ihedgemyhedges
ihedgemyhedges's picture

Yeah right, you keep telling yourself that.  I've been thinking for years now that my wife would release her pent up sexual demand too......

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:39 | 2979591 Ms. Erable
Ms. Erable's picture

But she has released that sexual demand - just not with you. Think of it as 'black market' sex.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:02 | 2979455 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

And think of all the broken windows (both literally and metaphorically) that will have to be fixed in NYC.

All of which are good for the economy (unless you look at total levels of debt, of course).

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:49 | 2979416 I am more equal...
I am more equal than others's picture

The trend is your friend.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:57 | 2979444 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



The money will never run out....but the Koolaid will taste like colored water.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:01 | 2979454 BBullionaire
BBullionaire's picture

it seems to have run out already for alot of people

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:03 | 2979467 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

Since when have they mattered?

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:06 | 2979475 BBullionaire
BBullionaire's picture

good point.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:53 | 2979643 Offthebeach
Offthebeach's picture

That's because they are not indebting themselves enough. Debt=money. Matter of fact, they are selfish. Enemy of the people. Anti-Krughmanites. Racists.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:50 | 2979421 adr
adr's picture

What could be more bullish?!!??

Also, will 2013 follow the same bullshit algo driven pattern as the past three years?

If so BTFD man!!!!

Maybe this year we can go for a 30% January gain. When all the data is bullshit and fundamentals don't matter, who cares.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:50 | 2979422 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

Santelli sure did not put a sad face on it. I think they finally got his shock collar secured.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:59 | 2979447 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



It's about time CNBC got control of that pit bull.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:03 | 2979457 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

Santelli is a good indian who goes off the reservation sometimes.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:52 | 2979423 JustObserving
JustObserving's picture

Bernanke is not printing enough - must keep stocks, bonds, commodities, housing and retail sales levitated.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:51 | 2979425 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Tell those Chinese customers to start spending so we can fire up the American sweatshops already.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:03 | 2979461 plaspotje
plaspotje's picture

don't worry about the chinese spending ,,i live here and my wife has never seen prices this low ,, from car's (clearing the channel stuffing)  to anything you can not eat ,, restaurant prices are lower and the places are not as bussy ,, however the chinese people are getting heavyer and taller so go long food and farmland

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:32 | 2979518 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

I farm just over 30,000 acres.  This is what I have been telling people for 20+ years.  Recognized it as soon as the chinese were given special access to our treasury market in the 90's. They look at me like I am insane.  Unfortunately, none of this behavior is sustainable.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:45 | 2979850 kraschenbern
kraschenbern's picture

What's your forecast on when the tax collectors will come after your seed stock?


Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:55 | 2979887 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Please.  When fraud is the status quo, possession is the law.  The answer will be the same one we all give for our PM stock as in "What seed stock?"

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 14:03 | 2980595 Things that go bump
Things that go bump's picture

Good nutrition will do that to people.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:05 | 2979472 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

I guess they will have to build more for-profit, private sector jails.

Thereby providing more "incarceration opportunities" aka slave labour.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:41 | 2979598 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Please pay attention.  Look at crime and punishment in China, much more efficient in that communist/socialist state.  People are put to death (no cost to taxpayer keeping criminals around).  This extends to all levels of society.  Remind me, how did things turn out for the managment of that company that sold the tainted milk formula again?  Please, wake the fuck up.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:37 | 2979814 Spastica Rex
Spastica Rex's picture

Hey! Our prison industry is the most profitable in the world!


Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:56 | 2979895 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Just like every other debtors prison throughout history.  Not sustainable.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:51 | 2979427 MillionDollarBoner_
MillionDollarBoner_'s picture

This is starting to feel like the end of 2008...all over again !:O)

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:51 | 2979428 caimen garou
caimen garou's picture

Holiday shopping will ramp up with buy now and no payments til 2013, funny how people will starve to get that I-crack!

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:55 | 2979440 Beam Me Up Scotty
Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Thats really everything in a nutshell isn't it.  Buy now and pay later.  Just think how well off we all could be if we could buy anything we wanted now, and not have to pay for it for 1000 years.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:06 | 2979473 Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

Which would leave consumers with no money to pay the more expensive food that will be offered all throughout 2013, couple that with declining per capita SNAP benefits and increased SNAP penetration, looks like America might finally on a forced diet next year, now if only the polticiians would do the same...

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:04 | 2979670 Taffy Lewis
Taffy Lewis's picture

No worries about food, Urban Redneck, Walmart is on the case:

Wal-Mart launches food subscription service

It's reassuring to know that "Walmart Labs" is enabling (or is that "disabling"?) people to buy "ethnic products" from the comfort of their own homes.

We aren't that far from The Matrix, where people will live their entire lives in pods. I give it 100 years.



Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:15 | 2979713 Winston of Oceania
Winston of Oceania's picture

Try reading the whole article, those are samples of food products that are not yet in stores. Hate them if you like but they are no different than any other big box retailer, try supporting a local vendor instead.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:53 | 2979433 youngman
youngman's picture

Guns and Ammo are doing fine.....they just said on CNBC that the fiscal cliff will NOT affect Christmas lets see ..your a military contractor and you have your yellow slip in you go out and buy a bunch of crap....I think not....

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:24 | 2979532 azzhatter
azzhatter's picture

Maybe there are a few openings for generals?

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:38 | 2979589 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



Droppin like flies they are.....something about Benghazi and a video.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:01 | 2979659 edifice
edifice's picture

Yes, sir. Buying the S.O. a G19 for Xmas, to go alongside mine. His & Hers. Yes, it's very cute.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:56 | 2979441 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

It's okay.  Uncle Bernank can crank out some more Bernank Bucks and save the holiday shopping season... and he can control inflation in 15 minutes if he has to.

100% FUBAR.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:58 | 2979445 MiltonFriedmans...
MiltonFriedmansNightmare's picture

Too bad the Bernank Bucks are for bankster use only.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:03 | 2979458 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

But... but... but... those kind banksters are supposed to lend those Bernank Bucks to Mr. and Mrs. Joe Sixpack at kindly terms to stimulate economic growth so we can grow our way out of debt... and we know Uncle Bernank can curb inflation in 15 minutes if necessary because he said he can...

100% FUBAR.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:56 | 2979442 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

cue the youtube vid where hitler explains how black friday will save retail sales.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 09:57 | 2979443 Tenshin Headache
Tenshin Headache's picture

Kevin is going to need a bigger shovel today.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:00 | 2979448 El Tuco
El Tuco's picture

Went to Kohls on the weekend for a super sale where you get like 30 % + off on everything. Looked at pair of running shoes that I was going to buy but was waiting for this sale. They marked them up 30 % for the sale. Left in disgust. But you would have not believed the fucking line up snaking around the store and how much absolute shit people were buying. I thought the store was going to run out of merchandize.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:25 | 2979533 Ness.
Ness.'s picture

Fuck Kohl's.  I went to a Veteran's Day sale to buy some Levi's - buy 1 get one 1/2 price.  I picked out my size and went to the counter only to find out that the list price on a pair of Levi's was $58.  $58 for a pair of fucking Levi's - not this guy.


I too left in disgust.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:57 | 2979648 dobermangang
dobermangang's picture

 Walmart has Wranglers for $9.50 on Black Friday.  Can't beat that. Stock up while the dollar is still worth something.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 12:06 | 2979928 flattrader
flattrader's picture

Fuck Walmart.  Tax subsidy sucking corporate welfare queen.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:01 | 2979452 Budd aka Sidewinder
Budd aka Sidewinder's picture

When the MSM anchors report the day after Black Friday that sales are booming, watch how much they blink

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:19 | 2979460 Lucius Corneliu...
Lucius Cornelius Sulla's picture

No worries, Uncle Sam will setup a Federal Agecny to securitize VISA and MASTERCARD debt.  That way the FED will be able to monetize it knowing full well that future generations of serfs will be on the hook.  After all, we all know how unfair banks are to those who have been deemed credit risks.  It is every American's right to have access to consumer credit regardless of their ability to repay.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:04 | 2979468 SwampHonkey
SwampHonkey's picture

Hey man its All Good......They fixed it remember.....Green shoots Bitches...Brb going to buy some FaceBook stock......

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:10 | 2979485 Sunshine n Lollipops
Sunshine n Lollipops's picture

I'd like to think Americans have searched their empty souls and discovered that more-shit does not equal more-happy. But no, they're just broke. Moar free shit, Hopey! The natives are suffering!

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:18 | 2979509 SwampHonkey
SwampHonkey's picture

Dont tell me, we have ran out of people who spend money they dont have,

to buy shit they dont need , to impressive people they dont like....Say it aint so


Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:14 | 2979707 glenlloyd
glenlloyd's picture

That's the quote of the day in my book....A+

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:10 | 2979486 LongSoupLine
LongSoupLine's picture




everything's bullish as we roll into opex friday.  

fuck ypu bernank.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:12 | 2979491 AC_Doctor
AC_Doctor's picture

Everyones credit card is maxed out, including the US Governments.  But, who will have the balls to cut up the card-the CHICOMS!!!

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 13:52 | 2980541 Rearranging Dec...
Rearranging Deckchairs's picture

Probably most peoples. But I know annecdotally of many people who have cut back and paid off their cards this year and are using a fraction of the credit available to them.



Wed, 11/14/2012 - 15:02 | 2980874 Things that go bump
Things that go bump's picture

We are cutting way back this year.  We have never funded our holiday extravaganzas by charging things, but our celebrations have become almost unrecognizable in their modesty over the past few years, and this year we are really toning things down.  We aren't exchanging among adults at all, only giving gifts to the kids.  I don't think it is just a matter of money either, because we could get each other some small thing easily enough.  It has all just become too much.  I think Christmas has been in a bubble and it has burst.   Aren't you finding that the whole thing has just become repugnant and hollow?  

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:14 | 2979499 firstdivision
firstdivision's picture

MBA Index is through the roof.  Must be Hurricane Sandy, no I mean the great recovery thanks to the low rates...

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:22 | 2979527 azzhatter
azzhatter's picture

I bought another $1000 worth of silver this morning. Does that count?

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:26 | 2979543 Sunshine n Lollipops
Sunshine n Lollipops's picture

Only if you put it on your Visa card. That you're never gonna pay off. Ever.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:27 | 2979547 desirdavenir
desirdavenir's picture

electronic and appliance stores ? -5.6% (vs 2011) ?

The month the iPad mini was launched, just after the release of the iPhone 5 ?


Wed, 11/14/2012 - 12:20 | 2980010 Shizzmoney
Shizzmoney's picture

Video game sales down -25% YOD as well.

Unless your game is FIFA, COD, Halo, or aint selling.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:33 | 2979569 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Markets green on the retail news or it may be because millions in Europe are rioting today. Could be Bernanke bucks behind the scenes action influencing reality again. Whatever it is...something doesn't seem right.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:36 | 2979580 gaoptimize
gaoptimize's picture

Last chart - 2012=2008, 2013=2009?

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:55 | 2979640 dobermangang
dobermangang's picture

Only guns and ammo are selling well.  Got Guns? 

"Always keep it loaded!  Always keep it loaded! Always keep it loaded!"

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:06 | 2979673 MFLTucson
MFLTucson's picture

Back to the Obama ecnomy now that they were able to manufacture finacial numbers for the election. 


Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:50 | 2979868 SilverFish
SilverFish's picture

Dont worry.


If there's anything the sheep love, its running up thousands on credit cards and playing santa to everyone they know, then filing bankruptcy the following spring.



Things will be fine. Just keep buying those IGadgets.


*cues music*

'makin' your way in the world today, takes everything ya got.... takin' a break from all your worries, sure could help a lot'

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 12:12 | 2979959 Shizzmoney
Shizzmoney's picture

Main Street: "We have no money."

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 13:07 | 2980252 Shizzmoney
Shizzmoney's picture

"Black Thursday is the new Black Friday"

Is anything fucking scared anymore?

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 13:10 | 2980266 dobermangang
dobermangang's picture

You can get most "black friday" deals online on Thanksgiving.  No need to even fight the crowds.  Most stores will have free shipping too, over a certain amount spent.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 13:48 | 2980515 Rearranging Dec...
Rearranging Deckchairs's picture

Really all I see is a slight dip. Yes a miss but still its nowhere near the 30% decline a true defationary "we have no more money" collapse would show.


If more Merikans were sensible they would boycott the malls this season instead of buying more cheap disposable crap from abroad and igadgets.


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spotdeals's picture

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