Retail spending in East Baton Rouge Parish rose about 2 percent in July, according to figures from the city-parish Finance Department.
Excluding vehicle sales, businesses and consumers spent $591.0 million that month compared to $581.3 million in July 2010.
Manufacturing, which makes up 10 percent of spending, rose 14 percent, while retail trade, which makes up almost half, fell 1 percent. Services and food-service and drinking establishments, which make up 20 percent, were flat.
Looking at the breakdown of retail sales inside and outside the city limits, spending inside dipped just under 1 percent to $316.3 million but rose 5 percent outside the city limits to $274.7 million.
For the year through July, total spending in East Baton Rouge Parish is up 2.5 percent to $4.27 billion.
It’s up 2 percent inside the city limits and 3 percent outside.
Vehicle sales were up 9 percent in July to $49.2 million and are up 9 percent for the first seven months of the year at $330.3 million.
Unlike last year, when declines had the city-parish cutting its budget, retail spending has topped year-before levels every month but one in 2011. The gap has been narrowing since May, however.
Looking at sales tax collections, which include vehicle sales, revenue was $12.8 million in July, up just over 2 percent. For the year, revenue is up just under 3 percent at $92.1 million.