Business Weather Wrap-Up




WEATHER TRENDS AND HIGHLIGHTS (Week Ending March 12, 2016)

It’s Getting Hot in Here! Temperatures Soar Across the East With the Warmest 2nd Week of March in Four Years. Record Rain Leads to Major Flooding in the South Central Regions.

Weekend Review: While temperatures cooled from the record warmth felt mid-week, locations from the Plains to the East Coast continued to experience above normal and LY warmth. Showers fell in the Mid-Atlantic, Ohio Valley, Great Lakes, and Plains. Rain continued across parts of Louisiana and Arkansas exacerbating the flooding. The Northern Plains, Canadian Prairies, and Desert Southwest had dry conditions while heavy rain and mountain snow limited traffic in the Pacific Northwest and California.

Let the Sun Shine In! Nationally, last week was the 3rd warmest second week of March in over 55 years and warmest since the record warm year of 2012; almost all regions had their warmest March week 2 since 2012. Consumers in New York City took advantage of their warmest second week of March since 1990 by purchasing spring apparel and enjoying some outdoor dining. Major cities including Atlanta, Boston, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Raleigh, and St. Louis were all warmest in 4 years, driving demand for spring apparel and providing a great opportunity to get a jump start on outdoor spring projects. Warmest anomalies were felt mid-week when locations such as New York City, Boston, Washington, D.C., and Baltimore all experienced temperatures 20-30 degrees above normal. Philadelphia hit a record high of 82°F on both Wednesday and Thursday, Boston reached 75°F on Wednesday, and New York City set a record of 79°F on Thursday.

Not Much Singing in This Rain. Devastating, flooding rain fell across the South Central regions leading to the wettest second week of March since 2011. The West South Central region recorded its wettest week 2 of March in 55+ years and the East South Central region since 1975. Little Rock and Memphis both had their wettest week in over 55 years. Multiple locations across northern Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana had record amounts of rain leading to widespread flooding and power outages.

Singing a Different Tune in the West. Welcomed rain fell in the West with San Francisco and Sacramento seeing their most March week 2 rain since 1995, LA since 2003, and San Diego since 2010. Western regions were also the focus of colder temperatures vs. LY, limiting spring purchasing. Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Portland, OR each had their coldest March week 2 since 2010.

Springtime in Canada. Warmth across Canada resulted in the warmest second week of March since 2012. Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, and Ottawa all experienced strong spring comps with their warmest March week 2 in four years. While western locations experienced warm conditions as well, most major markets trended colder vs. LY. Rainfall was the most since 2014 although below normal. Vancouver had its wettest second week of March since 2007; snowfall was the least since 2010.

For reference, last year temperatures and rainfall in the U.S. were both well above normal. Snowfall was the least in over 55 years. Temperatures in Canada were warmer than normal. Rain and snowfall were the least since 2010.  .

Last Week’s Weather vs. Last Year (Week ending March 12, 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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