ICSC: International Council of Shopping Centers


Publish Date: December 31, 2013

Topics: icsc, research, retail, retail real estate, retail sales

ICSC Contacts:
Michael Niemira
+ 1 646-728-3472

Jesse Tron
+ 1 646-728-3814

Malachy Kavanagh
+ 1 646-728-3495

Goldman Sachs Contact:
Leslie Shribman
+1 212-902-5400


NEW YORK, December 31, 2013 – Consumers waited once again till the last minute to shop for their holiday gifts. As a result, retailers closed out the 2013 holiday shopping season on a positive note as weekly sales increased by 1.0% for the week ending December 28, 2013, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs Weekly Chain Store Sales Index. On a year-over-year basis, the pace of sales continued to improve and rose by 3.0%.

“Business was brisk in the final days ahead of Christmas and for the week as a whole,” said Michael Niemira, ICSC vice president of research and chief economist. “Now attention turns to holiday gift-card redemptions as according to The ICSC-Goldman Sachs consumer tracking survey found that the consumers’ average share of total holiday spending that was in the form of a gift card rose to a record 23.7% in 2013. This is good news as it means that the ‘extended season’—the weeks after Christmas into January—will play an important role in the final tally of the season’s performance,” added Niemira.

For December ICSC Research expects monthly sales will increase between 3.0% and 4.0% as the promotional environment continues to be intense.

       Week Ending          Index 1977=100          Year/Year Change          Weekly Change
  28-Dec-13                     574.5                             3.0%                            1.0%
  21-Dec-13                     569.0                             2.7%                            1.4%
  14-Dec-13                     561.1                             2.0%                            4.8%
  07-Dec-13                     535.2                             1.5%                           -1.6%

[Editor's notes: The complete report will be available at 7:45 a.m. at: http://www.icsc.org/research/publications/weekly-retail-sales-tracking. In addition, historical data from this index is available under the Research section on ICSC’s website. To view the data, visit http://www.icsc.org/research/edataand click on the “Enter e-Data” link and enter the following member id number (1177584) and password (press2002pass) to obtain access to report and historical data. The material can be found under the “Tables Tab” once you enter the e-Data section.]

The Weekly Chain Store Sales Snapshot is produced by the International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs. This index measures U.S. nominal same-store or comparable-store sales excluding restaurant and vehicle demand. The weekly index is constructed as a sales-weighted geometric average growth rate to preserve long-term consistency and is statistically benchmarked to a broad-based monthly retail industry sales aggregate that currently represents a sampling of leading retail chain stores, which also is compiled by ICSC. A representative sample of those major retailers has been used as a control group to extrapolate the weekly sales index. As such, the weekly index statistically represents industry sales and is not just a sum of sales for a handful of retailers. The standard period used for the index is Sunday through Saturday, even though some retailers use a different weekly accounting period. The weekly sales index is presented on an adjusted basis to account for normal seasonality and to counter other data anomalies. Weekly seasonal adjustment is at best difficult for chain store sales given that retailers can and often do shift promotions to counter typical shifts in the calendar. Nonetheless, the approach to weekly seasonal adjustment used follows from the Piser Method, which was popular in the early 1930s and became the standard for weekly adjustment.

The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. is a bank holding company and a leading global investment banking, securities and investment management firm. Goldman Sachs provides a wide range of services worldwide to a substantial and diversified client base that includes corporations, financial institutions, governments and high net worth individuals. Founded in 1869, the firm is headquartered in New York and maintains offices in London, Frankfurt, Tokyo, Hong Kong and other major financial centers around the world.

Founded in 1957, ICSC is the premier global trade association of the shopping center industry. Its more than 60,000 members in over 90 countries include shopping center owners, developers, managers, marketing specialists, investors, retailers and brokers, as well as academics and public officials.  As the global industry trade association, ICSC links with more than 25 national and regional shopping center councils throughout the world.  For more information, visit www.icsc.org.   


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