Taxable retail sales hit $1.1B in county, $27.9B in state

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Taxable retail sales reached $27.9 billion during the fourth quarter of 2011, a 4.2 percent increase from the same period a year ago, the Washington State Department of Revenue reported Wednesday.

In Clark County, taxable retail sales increased 5.6 percent, to $1.1 billion. Vancouver reported an even larger increase, with sales of $652 million, up 6.1 percent from a year ago.

The narrower category of retail trade, which counts retail store sales but excludes other sectors such as construction and services, was up 3.6 percent statewide compared with the same period a year ago, to $13.3 billion. Retail trade for Clark County totaled $538 million, a 2.6 percent increase. Vancouver reported $305 million in retail trade, up 4.7 percent.

Among major industry groups statewide, construction rose 5.8 percent to $4.3 billion; accommodations and food services rose 5.7 percent to $2.9 billion; motor vehicles and parts rose 6.5 percent to $2.6 billion; general merchandise stores was up 0.1 percent to $3.1 billion; and miscellaneous retailers was up 6.9 percent to $1.6 billion.