Official: Retail sales, construction reflect economy confidencePIERRE — South Dakota’s retail and construction sectors are humming this summer.
By: Bob Mercer, The Daily Republic
PIERRE — South Dakota’s retail and construction sectors are humming this summer.
July sales tax revenues were up 9.7 percent from the similar month a year ago, while contractor excise tax revenues rose 9 percent, according to state Revenue Secretary Andy Gerlach.
He made his remarks Wednesday during a meeting with the South Dakota Lottery Commission.
South Dakota’s low rate of unemployment — 4.3 percent each month for February through June — reflects that people are working and feeling good about what they have in their lives, Gerlach said.
He acknowledged the effects of the drought on South Dakota’s farms and ranches remain to be fully understood.
For now, retail sales and construction activity are “two good numbers economically,” Gerlach said.
People are spending in stores and are investing in homes and business projects. Construction triggers further buying of equipment, furnishings and appliances. “That again tells me people have some confidence in the economy,” he said.
The 2012 state fiscal year ended June 30 and showed a 4.8 percent increase in sales tax revenues and a 26.3 percent burst of growth in contractor excise tax in comparison to the fiscal 2011 totals.