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Shutdown Impacts Consumers' Spending, Says Sales Report
WASHINGTON (10/16/13)--Consumers are cutting back on expenditures due to the government shutdown and lower income Americans are more likely to be exercising caution, according to a study by the International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs.

Two out of five consumers reported that they scaled back spending as a result of the dysfunction in Washington. But while only 32% of those making $100,000 or more said they've been budgeting for the shutdown, 47% of consumers who make $35,000 or less reported a reduction in spending (Rapaport Oct 15).

Of respondents who reported a reduction in spending, 70% said that they've only decreased outlays by "a little"--the rest said the reduction was "considerable."

The poll was conducted between Thursday and Sunday.

Another survey conducted by the ICSC and Goldman showed that their Retail Chain Store Sales Index--a measure of seasonally adjusted comparable-store sales from the previous year--fell by 0.7% in the week ending Oct. 12, despite largely favorable weather and stable gas prices throughout the country last week.

The index's year-to-year growth dropped to 1%, down from 2.3% on year-to-date growth (Moody's Economy.com Oct. 15). However, ICSC research predicts that comparable-store sales will increase between 3% and 4% in October.


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