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Taxable retail sales up 9 percent in first three months of 2015

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OLYMPIA - Aug. 4, 2015 - The state's taxable retail sales totals grew to $29.7 billion in the first quarter of 2015 (Jan. 1-March 31), recording a 9 percent increase over the same period in 2014. Retail trade, a subset of total taxable retail sales, rose 7.5 percent to $13.3 billion.

The results come from a quarterly report released by the Washington State Department of Revenue. The report compares taxable retail sales figures from the first quarters of 2015 to 2014, which equalizes any seasonal effects of consumer purchasing habits.

Taxable sales were up in many of the retail trade sectors:

· Health and drug store sales by 20.3 percent

· E-commerce and mail orders by 19.2 percent

· Building and garden supply stores by 16.7 percent

· New and used vehicles by 11.6 percent

The mining, construction and real estate industries all saw first quarter gains, too.

Counties: First quarter 2015 results for most populous counties

Taxable retail sales

Percent change

Retail trade

Percent change

King

$12.09 billion

10.5

$4.58 billion

6.9

Pierce

$3.1 billion

7.1

$1.61 billion

8

Snohomish

$2.77 billion

7.3

$1.48 billion

6.1

Spokane

$1.86 billion

6.8

$943 million

9.3

Clark

$1.32 billion

13.8

$591 million

13.5

Thurston

$998 million

9.8

$517 million

7.5

Kitsap

$834 million

8.1

$451 million

8.2

Yakima

$829 million

8.4

$381 million

8.5

Whatcom

$795 million

5.3

$377 million

3.4

Skagit

$555 million

7.2

$303 million

6.6

Cities: First quarter 2015 results for cities with the most sales

Taxable retail sales

Percent change

Retail trade

Percent change

Seattle

$5 billion

14.5

$1.47 billion

7.7

Bellevue

$1.5 billion

10.5

$625 million

6.3

Tacoma

$1.06 billion

6

$542 million

5.5

Spokane

$1.03 billion

7.9

$484 million

9.9

Vancouver

$767 million

15.2

$347 million

13.7

Additional detailed reports are available here: http://dor.wa.gov/Content/AboutUs/StatisticsAndReports/stats_lrs2015.aspx.

About Revenue

The Department of Revenue is Washington state's primary tax administration agency, nationally recognized for innovation and service quality. Revenue collected more than $19.6 billion in tax revenues in fiscal year 2014. These funds go to support public schools, social services, health care, corrections, public safety and natural resources conservation.

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