The index's decrease compared with a target for a decline of 1%.The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index also showed seasonally adjusted sales for the period improved 2.9% from a year earlier, compared with a target for an increase of a 3.2%.For the fourth week of February, sales rose 2.7% from a year earlier.
Redbook noted sales were below plan in the final week of the month, contributing to sales for the month missing targets.
Looking ahead, March sales are expected to be hurt by Easter coming three weeks later this year than last year, pushing most holiday sales into April. March is a five-week month on the retail calendar ending April 5. Redbook's preliminary target is for growth of 3.3% year-to-year.