Latest Marcus & Millichap research points to more confident consumers

 

Retailers love confident consumers. Because of this, they should also love the latest research brief from Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services.

According to the report, everything from stronger employment growth, a smaller amount of unemployment claims and improved stock-market returns are boosting consumer confidence. In fact, the Consumer Confidence Index rose to 70.3 in September, marking the highest this figure has been in seven months.

And, as Marcus & Millichap reports, even though wage and income growth has been sluggish at best, consumers are now saving less and spending cautiously.

Electronics and appliance stores benefitted the most from this, contributing to a strong rise in retail sales in September.

Overall, Marcus & Millichap reported that September retail and food sales totaled $412.9 billion, representing a 1.1 percent monthly increase over August sales and a 5.4 percent increase from the same month a year earlier.

Auto sales also saw a nice jump, rising 9.3 percent in September when compared to the same month in 2011. Part of the reason for this jump came from the aggressive discounts that auto dealers offered to rid their showrooms of 2012 models.

This news should be welcomed by all commercial brokers. When consumers start to reach back in their wallets, that only means good news for the commercial real estate industry.

– Dan Rafter

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