Last night, data was released for Eurozone Real Retail Sales. For the 7th month in a row, the indicator missed economist estimates. This is the second longest streak of misses since 2007 when the indicator missed for 9 straight months ending in December 2007.
Sales reported for August were down -0.2% versus estimates of a gain of 0.2%. The prior month also saw a large downward revision to -0.6% from the original -0.2% number. This is on the back of less than exciting releases—especially on a YoY basis—for Markit Composite and Services PMIs for the Eurozone area that also came out last night.
As you can see in the chart below, historically, Retail Sales have been reliably correlated to Consumer Confidence. But in the past few years we have witnessed the two indicators begin to diverge. The silver lining to this divergence is it helps to explain the misses. Since the two have moved in sync in the past, economists rely on confidence data to predict upcoming sales, and the two moving further apart throws off estimates.