Local retail sales lagged below state average in 2014

Retail sales in Bellingham and Whatcom County lagged behind the state average in 2014.

Total taxable sales increased 0.9 percent in Bellingham and 2.2 percent in Whatcom County, while the state average was 6.6. percent, according to data from the state Department of Revenue.

In both Bellingham and Whatcom County, sales increased in most industries, but sales decreased for apparal and accessories, department stores, and general merchandise stores.

Statewide, sales at department stores decreased by about the same rate as in Bellingham and Whatcom County, but sales for apparel and accessories and general merchandise went up.

For Bellingham’s retail industry—which excludes non-retail sectors such as construction and services—sales declined by 0.5 percent in 2014.

The complete report is online at the state Department of Revenue’s website.

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