I think there’s a tendency to lump every business in one sector into one particular category. For example, businesses that sell directly to consumers are called retail – thus we talk about the retail sector. But individual parts of the retail sector might be going in different directions. Did we see that in 2017?
- Yes we did
- Some of the strongest parts of the retail sector in 2017 were related to housing – like sales of furniture, carpets, and drapes
- Reason – the robust housing market during the year
- Also especially strong were so-called “specialty stores” particularly for food and drinks
- Reflected the preference of Millennials and I-Gens to avoid “chains” and cater to different, unique, and unusual
- Last, auto and parts retailers experienced some softening of sales in 2017, but this is relative to their almost double-digit growth rates of previous years
- So all retail is not the same