Chain Store Sales Rise for Third-Straight Week

U.S. chain store sales rose in the latest week for the third consecutive week with another boost from relatively warm weather ranging from the South to the Midwest, according to a report Tuesday.

Sales ticked up 0.2 percent higher in the week ended March 4, after rising by 1.5 percent in the prior week, according to the report produced by the International Council of Shopping Centers and UBS Securities LLC.

The ICSC also said sales rose 4.3 percent last week versus the same year-earlier week. In the previous week sales were up 3.6 percent versus the same week a year ago.

"As summer-like weather warmed up the South and very mild weather extended as far north as Illinois over the last week, consumers got the shopping bug," said Michael P. Niemira, ICSC's chief economist and director of research.

"For March, ICSC expects industry same-store sales to rise by approximately 2.5 percent to 3.0 percent, on a year-over-year basis for the month as Easter-related sales shift from March to April," Niemira added.