Glenwood’s Nov. retail sales up 9.5% |

Glenwood’s Nov. retail sales up 9.5%

Sales of general merchandise in Glenwood Springs moved into the positive column for the first time in two years in November, bringing the 2014 total through 11 months to 7.3 percent ahead of the same period in 2013, according to the city’s November sales tax report.

November alone saw a nearly 9.5 percent increase in sales in the month-over-month comparison, as retail sales continued to rebound to near prerecession levels for the year that just concluded.

Still to be reported is the largest single month of the year for retail activity, December, during which sales are typically higher due to holiday shopping. Those numbers, along with a preliminary look at the year-end figures, should be available in early February.

General merchandise sales, which is the largest category for the city, brought in more than $2.5 million in sales taxes through November, up 0.08 percent over 2013 collections through 11 months, according to the monthly report.

Sales in that category, which includes the larger retailers in Glenwood Springs such as Target and Wal-Mart, have lagged for the past two years.

The last time sales of general merchandise surpassed the previous year’s totals through better than three-quarters of the year was in November 2012.

Last year’s sales also continued strong for building materials and supplies, up 10.3 percent; automobile sales and service, up nearly 15 percent; eating out, up 7.3 percent; food stores, up 4.5 percent; lodging, up 14 percent; and miscellaneous retail, up 13.7 percent.

Through 11 months, the city had collected nearly $13.8 million in sales taxes, representing roughly $372.5 million in total retail sales.

The city’s separate accommodations tax, which goes to support tourism promotion, was also up 18 percent in November, and for the year to date through November was up 15 percent over 2013.

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