November retail sales across Texas remained flat while prices increased, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
In a recent retail outlook survey, the Dallas Fed found that early November sales across Texas increased at 16.7 percent, the same rate as they grew in October. The selling prices index, the average cost for goods, increased by 1 percent last month.
Released on Nov. 25, the bank’s survey does not account for the start of the holiday shopping season. Local economic development professionals continue to report strong sales throughout Central Texas. For the third consecutive month, Charley Ayres, vice president of Temple’s Economic Development Corp., indicated that retail sales are “up across the area.”
“People are making good money and they love shopping local,” Ayers said.
Although statewide sale increases remained marginal, the Dallas Fed reported that retail sector activity increased in anticipation of the holiday shopping season.
Retail jobs increased by 10.8 percent in November. Despite increases in payroll, actual hours worked by retail employees dropped 2.9 percent last month. The 246 Texas business executives surveyed by the bank reported that retail wages increased by 3.2 percent across the state last month.
About 26 percent of the executives surveyed reported increased optimism over short-term economic conditions in November. With 29 percent of respondents noting an improved company outlook over the prior month, compared with 4 percent reporting their outlook had worsened.