Redbook Index Confirms December Retail Collapse

Submitted by Mish Shedlock of MishTalk

Some economists were in disbelief regarding the huge collapse in retail sales in December. Other indicators now confirm.

Here is a tweet on the subject.

That chart is weekly. Ideally, we need to see monthly and it wasn't posted.

Redbook

The Johnson Redbook Index is a proprietary indicator of growth in retail sales, and provides advanced estimates of trends in retail sales ahead of official releases and company reports in an easy-to-read four-page report. The weekly indicator is made public every Tuesday morning, with clients receiving notice via conference call, e-mail or fax prior to public release.

The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Monthly is a comprehensive report of same-store sales data reported monthly by general merchandise and apparel retailers. Analysis is given on current month sales, year-on-year, quarterly and annual sales, historical sales data and company rankings. Retailers are tracked across categories: Apparel Specialty, Books, Toy & Hobby, Department, Discount, Footwear, Furniture, Drug, Home Improvement, Home Furnishings, Electronic, Jewelry, Sporting Goods, and Miscellaneous. The Johnson Redbook Same-store Sales Index (SSI), an index of year-on-year same-store sales growth is reported in each edition.

Shockingly Weak Retail Sales

Redbook ties in with my report Shockingly Weak Retail Sales: Down 1.2% in December, Sharpest Decline Since 2009

And its not just retail sales either.

Other Confirming Indicators

  1. Autos: Surge in Auto Loan Delinquencies: Auto Loans in High Gear
  2. Credit Card Stress: Household Debt Up 18 Consecutive Quarters to a New Record, Card Stress Rising
  3. Falling Imports: Trade Deficit Shrinks in November Primarily Due to Falling Imports
  4. Industrial Production: Industrial Production Dives, Wiping Out a Strong December and Then Some

Very Recessionary

Add it all up and it looks very recessionary. And the EU is already there. Eurozone Recession: Right Here, Right Now!

There is no reason to believe the US will be immune to a global slowdown. People thought that China would decouple in 2008. It didn't. The US won't either.