February Sales Show Strong Consumer Spending


The Fiserv Small Business Index for February 2024 found that small business sales grew 3% month-over-month and 7% year-over-year. This index is an indicator of the performance of small businesses in the United States at national, state and industry levels.

“Consumer spending accelerated through February, delivering a significant boost to small business sales,” said Prasanna Dhore, Chief Data Officer at Fiserv, in a news release. “Small businesses in the Retail sector had a particularly strong month, with a high volume of foot traffic helping drive 3.7% month-over-month and 7.2% year-over-year sales growth. We also saw spending at Food Services and Drinking Places rebound after a lackluster January, with sales up 4.1% month-over-month.”

Retail Spotlight

Retail small businesses delivered strong results in February, with an index of 149, reflecting a +6 point gain over January, the report states. Sales activity grew a seasonally adjusted +3.7% over January and +7.2% year-over-year. Sales growth was boosted by gains in foot traffic, with retail small business transaction numbers at a five year high.

Additional Small Business Insights

Food Services and Drinking Places had an impressive rebound in February, jumping +5 points over the previous month to an index of 127, according to the report. The gains follow a lackluster January, which was impacted by harsh weather in addition to the natural downshift from the holiday season. In February, small business customers devoted the biggest share of their wallets and their incremental spend to this subsector. Spending was up +4.1% over January and +6.3% compared to last year.

Specialty Trade Contractors had a February index of 149, a +3 point increase over January. Month-over-month sales expanded by +2.3%. Growth compared to February 2023 was even more substantial, up +4.7%, the report states. The Specialty Trade Contractors subsector includes service providers, such as carpentry and masonry, roofing, electrical, and heating and plumbing specialists.