Local stores go against national trends in sales for September

In September, Mount Pleasant retailers followed the overall national trend in retail increases and surpassed it in particular markets.

U.S. retail sales rose across the country in September, exceeding the expectations of economists. This rise was the largest seen in the past seven months, according to data from the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Nationwide, the biggest drop in the month was seen in grocery stores with a 0.3 percent decline, but Mount Pleasant grocery stores experienced the opposite.

Sarah Christensen, general manager at Greentree Natural Grocery, 214 N. Franklin St., said the store recorded an increase.

“Our sales grew about seven percent in September,” Christensen said.

Christensen said the renovation the store underwent and other improvements may be the reason for the increase in sales.

“We are trying to create a better experience for our customers,” Christensen said.

Ric’s Food Center, 705 S. Mission St., also went against the national trend.

Tom Baumann, Ric’s vice president of operations, said the Mount Pleasant location, as well as the other stores have been doing very well over the past few weeks.

“We have had a few events that have helped us a lot,” Baumann said. “The annual meat sale is a big contributor and there have been a few home games this fall.”

Christopher Bailey, assistant professor of economics, said he believes the economy will continue to grow slowly.

“It is certainly not a strong economy, but is now stronger than it was in the summer,” Bailey said.

Grocery stores were not the only retailers in Mount Pleasant that went against the national norm.

The owner of The Book Garden, Richard Templeman, said his store did not follow the trend of decreasing sales like bookstores did in the national average.

“We have been doing consistently well,” Templeman said.

He said September is generally a slower month downtown and there was no increase or decrease.

Templeman said he expects to see the biggest increase in sales to come in late October due to downtown events like Girls Night Out and the Dickens Christmas Festival.

“Holiday season hasn’t kicked in yet,” Templeman said.


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