Small retailers see year-over-year sales growth fall behind overall U.S. retail sales

A recent report compiled by MasterCard in partnership with Wells Fargo revealed that spending at smaller retailers in October fell 1.6 percent to 4.2 percent year-over-year, the slowest year-over-year growth rate for small retailers in 2012.

The report also revealed that the growth of spending at small retailers fell one percent below the growth rate of all U.S. retail sales and that the exclusion of gasoline sales causes the growth rate to drop even further to 3.6 percent.

“This was the first time the small retailer sales year-over-year growth rate has lagged behind overall retail sales growth since September 2011,” Michael McNamara, a global solutions leader at MasterCard SpendingPulse, said. “However, thanks to the fairly strong performance of smaller retailers for the first nine months of the year, on a year-to-date basis, small retailers continue to outperform overall total retail sales excluding auto.”

Additionally, the report found that on a year-to-date basis, the sales growth rate for small retailers excluding auto was 7.4 percent from January 2010 through October 2012, a 1.8 percent lead over the growth of U.S. retail at 5.6 percent.

“The recovery for small businesses has not been strong enough to yield consistent increases in the sales growth rate from month-to-month, yet the overall trend in small retailer sales this year has been one of improvement,” Marc Bernstein, the head of small business at Wells Fargo, said.

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