July 23, 2018
Suppliers are vital partners for retailers! Attend our seminar this Wednesday to learn how to strengthen and evaluate retail suppliers.
This Wednesday: Looking For (Supplier) Love In All The Wrong Places?
Join the Minnesota Retailers Association for "Supplier Partnerships | Dating For Business?" featuring Juli Lassow of JHL Solutions .
Every business depends on key partnerships in order to thrive: customers, employees, board members and suppliers. Suppliers provide the lifeblood to your products and services, bringing your vision to life – but how often do we take time to cultivate these partnerships? How do we ensure that the totality of our supplier partnerships is a reflection of the values and principles of your organization? How do we gather their feedback and insights, to enable our own growth. These questions and more, will be discussed at this seminar.
Event Details:
Supplier Partnerships | Dating For Business?
Roseville Public Library
Wednesday, July 25, 2018
10:15 - 11:30 a.m.
Pre-registration preferred. Call (651) 227-6631 or register online now .
Join Us In D.C. September 5-6 For NRF's Retail Advocates Summit
The Minnesota Retailers Association (MnRA) is leading a delegation of retailers to Washington, D.C. September 5-6 to attend the National Retail Federation's Retail Advocates Summit. The event includes visits with Minnesota's Senators and House of Representatives members.

MnRA has some limited scholarship funding available for smaller sized retailers. If you are interested in attending, contact Bruce Nustad at bruce@mnretail.org before Wednesday, July 25.
June Retail Sales Continue 'Steady Run' With 4.2 Percent Increase Over 2017 Despite Threats From Trade War
From the National Retail Federation, July 16, 2018

June retail sales were up 0.07 percent seasonally adjusted from May’s strong performance and increased 4.2 percent unadjusted year-over-year as economic growth continued despite the U.S. trade war with China and other countries, the National Retail Federation said today. The numbers exclude automobiles, gasoline stations and restaurants.

“This is a healthy retail sales report and consistent with underlying economic momentum that has fueled a steady run of retail sales increases,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “The big question is whether households can continue this spending pace, which is helping drive the current economic cycle. We think they can, but the big risk to the outlook is the trade war, which could raise prices while reducing consumer confidence and household buying power.”

The three-month moving average was up 4.4 percent over the same period a year ago, matching the top end of NRF’s forecast that 2018 retail sales will grow between 3.8 percent and 4.4 percent over 2017.

The June results build on improvement seen in May, which was up 1 percent monthly and up 6.1 percent year-over-year.

NRF’s numbers are based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau, which said overall June sales – including automobiles, gasoline and restaurants – were up 0.5 percent seasonally adjusted from May and up 6.6 percent year-over-year.

Specifics from key retail sectors during June include:

  • Online and other non-store sales were up 7.3 percent year-over-year and up 1.3 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
  • Health and personal care stores were up 5.8 percent year-over-year and up 2.2 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
  • Clothing and clothing accessory stores were up 4.6 percent year-over-year but down 2.5 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
  • Furniture and home furnishings stores were up 4.4 percent year-over-year and up 0.6 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
  • Grocery and beverage stores were up 4.2 percent year-over-year but down 0.3 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
  • General merchandise stores were up 3.1 percent year-over-year but down 0.8 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
  • Building materials and garden supply stores were up 2.8 percent year-over-year and up 0.8 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
  • Electronics and appliance stores were up 1.6 percent year-over-year but down 0.4 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted
  • Sporting goods stores were down 3.7 percent year-over-year and down 3.2 percent month-over-month seasonally adjusted.
A Year After Sunday Sales, Jury Still Out On Benefits For Minn. Liquor Store Owners
From the Star Tribune, Nicole Norfleet, July 22, 2018

For Dana Rose, Sundays used to be for relaxing.

Last July, that changed. Since Minnesota began to allow alcohol to be sold in stores on Sundays, Rose, who co-owns a pair of liquor stores in Minneapolis and St. Paul, has had to get used to being open seven days a week.

“Sundays are just convenient for consumers,” said Rose, who said he feels obligated to open his store Sunday so he doesn’t lose business. “I totally understand that, but as an owner that has to work seven days a week now, I’m against it. One day off is necessary. … We have families. We have a social life.”

Minnesota ended a more than century-old ban on Sunday liquor sales on July 2 last year. Sales are allowed from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

While many customers rejoiced over the freedom to get their booze fix on a Sunday, the additional business day has posed challenges for many small and independently owned liquor stores.
Minnesota Gains 6,600 Jobs In June; Unemployment Remains At Lowest In 18 Years
From the Pioneer Press, Tiffany Bui, July 19, 2018

Minnesota added 6,600 new jobs in June, helping the state maintain its 3.1 percent unemployment rate.

The latest seasonally adjusted employment figures were released Thursday by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. The state’s unemployment rate remains at its lowest point in 18 years, and below the national rate of 4 percent in June.
State Department of Employment and Economic Development Commissioner Shawntera Hardy

And for nearly four years, the state’s joblessness rate has been at or below 4 percent, according to the office of Gov. Mark Dayton. The statewide employment totals more than 2.96 million jobs, the most ever.

The state’s job growth for the past year of 1.5 percent, though, lags the national 1.7 percent rate.

“Minnesota gained 17,300 jobs over the past two months, the state’s strongest growth spurt in more than a year,” said DEED Commissioner Shawntera Hardy in a statement Thursday. “Overall employment in the state is at a record level and continuing to grow, however, we must continue to invest in communities where job growth is not as strong.”

DEED also issued a correction in its monthly report, revising the number of jobs added in May from 10,200 jobs gained to 10,700 jobs gained.

The following industry sectors added jobs in June:

  • Leisure and hospitality added 2,700 jobs.
  • Manufacturing added 2,000 jobs.
  • Construction gained 1,500 jobs.
  • Information industry added 900 jobs.
  • Professional and business services added 900 jobs.
  • Trade, transportation and utilities gained 600 jobs.
  • “Other services” gained 200 jobs.
Minneapolis Announces Business Technical Assistance Program To Help With Minimum Wage And Sick Leave Compliance
From the City of Minneapolis