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WEATHER TRENDS AND HIGHLIGHTS (Week Ending October 22, 2016)

Red October! The Warmest Week 3 of October in Over 55 Years in the U.S. and Warmest Since 1963 in Canada Put a Damper on Seasonal Spending. It was a Wet Week on Both Coasts.

Weekend Review: Autumn returned east of the Mississippi River with below normal and LY temperatures in the Northeast and Ohio Valley. Early weekend rain in the Northeast also led to the first snowfall of the season in the higher elevations of New England. Above normal and LY temperatures were found in the North Central regions and the Southwest. The Northwest contended with spotty showers and slightly colder than normal and LY conditions. Wetter than normal conditions were found in the Canadian Prairies and eastern Canada, while drier than normal conditions spread across much of the southern half of the U.S. and Midwest.

Some Like It Hot! Nationally, it was the warmest October week 3 in more than 55 years, driven primarily by the southern and eastern portions of the country. Record-breaking heat hit the New England and Mid-Atlantic regions, giving them their warmest retail week 38 in 55+ years. The East North Central region was warmest since 1971; the East South Central and South Atlantic regions since 1984. NYC, Boston, Philadelphia, and Baltimore were all warmest in 55+ years. Cleveland and Cincinnati were warmest since 1963, San Diego since 1965, Detroit since 1971, and Atlanta, Nashville, and Indianapolis since 1984. Warm temperatures limited demand for fall apparel and hot beverages.

Colder in the Northwest. The Northern Tier of the country from the Pacific Coast to the West North Central region experienced colder temperatures to LY, supporting seasonal purchasing. Portland, OR, Sacramento, and Salt Lake City were all coldest since 2012; Seattle and San Francisco since 2013.

Dark Clouds Over Me. Nationally, it was the wettest 3rd week of October since 2009. A mid-week system brought rain from the central U.S. to the East Coast, with the Mid-Atlantic region being wettest since 1989. Buffalo was wettest in 55+ years; St. Louis since 1983, NYC since 1990, Pittsburgh since 2006, and Cincinnati since 2007. Showers also fell across Northern California and the Pacific Northwest, causing the Pacific region to be wettest since 2004. Both Sacramento and San Francisco were wettest since 2004. Heavy rain drove demand for wiper blades and rainwear while also impacting traffic into malls and shopping centers.

Canadian Warmth. Nationally, Canada had its warmest week 3 of October since 1963, driven by the eastern half of the country. Halifax was warmest in 55+ years, Toronto since 1963, and Ottawa and Montreal since 2007. Meanwhile, Edmonton and Calgary were coldest since 2012, with a little snow falling in both cities supporting demand for fall apparel and cold weather categories. Precipitation fell across much of the country, making it the wettest October week 3 in over 55 years. Montreal and Quebec City were wettest in 55+ years, Ottawa since 1967, Toronto and Calgary since 2012.

For reference, last year , the U.S. had its warmest 3rd week of October since 2005 and wettest since 2009. Hurricane Patricia made landfall on Mexico’s Pacific Coast as a Category 5 hurricane. Temperatures in Canada were near normal and it was driest since 2010.

Last Week’s Weather vs. Last Year (Week ending October 22, 2016)

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WEATHER DRIVEN-DEMAND BY PRODUCT (Week Ending October 22, 2016)

Weather-Driven Demand (WDD) is the measured impact of weather on comp sales (“lift” or “drag”).  It is a numerical representation of the consumer need for a product or service caused by perceived changes in the weather at a time/location intersection.  It does not include any factors other than weather (e.g. price, competition, etc.)  WDD is expressed as percent change from the previous year, either favorable (positive) or unfavorable (negative) for each product or service. 

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