NEW YORK - NEW YORK (AP) — An important measure of retail sales confirmed Tuesday that the last Saturday before Christmas was a disappointment as a snowstorm that slammed the Northeast stymied shoppers during a week crucial to retailers.
That means retailers are counting even more on a spending surge in the final days before Christmas.
The International Council of Shopping Centers-Goldman Sachs index reported that for the week ended Saturday, sales rose just 0.6 percent compared with the previous week.
Compared with the same period last year, the index rose 0.4 percent. A week earlier, that figure was up 2.4 percent.
The measurement is based on sales at stores open at least a year, considered a key indicator of retailer's health.
The last Saturday before Christmas is usually either the biggest or second-biggest shopping day of the year.
Figures from research firm ShopperTrak, which tracks sales and traffic at more than 50,000 outlets, are slated to be released Tuesday afternoon.