The Commerce Department released retail sales figures today for March, which were up 1.1%, the biggest increase in 18 months. Could these numbers mean that the rough times for the retail sector are finally nearing the end?
In this segment from Monday's Investor Beat, host Alison Southwick and Motley Fool analysts Evan Niu and Taylor Muckerman discuss the forces driving retail upward last month. One of the big drivers was automobile sales and auto parts, partly because of the record high average age of cars on the road going into this past winter, and also partly because of the severe winter this year, causing more cars to break down. Taylor looks through the automakers, and some recent recalls they've had to issue, and gives his picks for investors in the sector today.
One retail component that didn't fare well last month was electronics. Evan discusses the seasonality of the space and notes that March is often slow after the Christmas and Valentine's Day catalysts, and he points to some upcoming devices that investors and consumers alike should keep an eye out for.