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Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

Agency: U.S. Census Bureau.

Title: Monthly Retail Trade Survey.

OMB Control Number: 0607-0717.

Form Number(s): SM-44(12)S, SM-44(12)SE, SM-44(12)SS, SM-44(12)B, SM-44(12)BE, SM-44(12)BS, SM-45(12)S, SM-45(12)SE, SM-45(12)SS, SM-45(12)B, SM-45(12)BE, SM-45(12)BS, SM-72(12)S, and SM-20(12)I.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Burden Hours: 14,427.

Number of Respondents: 10,305.

Average Hours per Response: 7 minutes.

Needs and Uses: The Monthly Retail Trade Survey (MRTS) provides estimates of monthly retail sales, end-of-month merchandise inventories, and quarterly e-commerce sales of retailers in the United States. In addition, the survey also provides an estimate of monthly sales at food service establishments and drinking places.

Sales, inventories, and e-commerce data provide a current statistical picture of the retail portion of consumer activity. The sales and inventories estimates in the MRTS measure current trends of economic activity that occur in the United States. The survey estimates provide valuable information for economic policy decisions and actions by the government and are widely used by private businesses, trade organizations, professional associations, and others for market research and analysis. The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) uses these data in determining the consumption portion of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Retail and Food Services Sales during 2013 amounted to $4.5 trillion. The estimates produced in the MRTS are critical to the accurate measurement of total economic activity. The estimates of retail sales represent all operating receipts, including receipts from wholesale sales made at retail locations and services rendered as part of the sale of the goods, by businesses that primarily sell at retail. The sales estimates include sales made on credit as well as on a cash basis, but exclude receipts from sales taxes and interest charges from credit sales. Also excluded is non-operating income from such services as investments and real estate.

The estimates of merchandise inventories owned by retailers represent all merchandise located in retail stores, warehouses, offices, or in transit for distribution to retail establishments. The estimates of merchandise inventories exclude fixtures and supplies not held for sale, as well as merchandise held on consignment owned by others. BEA uses inventories data to determine the investment portion of the GDP.

Retail e-commerce sales are estimated from the same sample used in the MRTS to estimate preliminary and final U.S. retail sales.

The MRTS sample is updated every five years to account for new retail employer businesses (including those selling via the Internet), business deaths, and other changes to the retail business universe. Research was conducted to ensure that retail firms selected in the MRTS sample engaged in e-commerce are representative of the universe of e-commerce retailers. Total e-commerce sales for 2013 were estimated at $263 billion.

We publish retail sales and inventories estimates based on the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).

BEA is the primary Federal user of data collected in the MRTS. BEA uses the information in its preparation of the National Income and Products Accounts, and its benchmark and annual input-output tables. Statistics provided from retail sales and inventories estimates are used in the calculation of GDP. If the survey were not conducted, BEA would lack comprehensive data from the retail sector. This would adversely affect the reliability of the National Income and Products Accounts and GDP.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) uses the data as input to their Producer Price Indexes and in developing productivity measurements. The data are also used for gauging current economic trends of the economy. Private businesses use the retail sales and inventories data to compute business activity indexes. The private sector also uses retail sales as a reliable indicator of consumer activity.

Affected Public: Business or other for-profit.

Frequency: Monthly.

Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

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Legal Authority: Title 13 U.S.C., Section 182.

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This information collection request may be viewed at Follow the instructions to view Department of Commerce collections currently under review by OMB.

Written Comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publications of this notice to or faxed to (202) 395-5806,

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Dated: May 30, 2014.

Glenna Mickelson,

Management Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer.

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[FR Doc. 2014-12924 Filed 6-3-14; 8:45 am]