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Retail Mall Foot Traffic Picks Up Ahead of Thanksgiving

Based on mobile phone usage in malls, U.S. mall foot traffic rose by 2.5 percent in the past four weeks.

(Bloomberg)—U.S. mall foot traffic rose 2.5% for the latest four-week period from a year earlier, as the Thanksgiving holiday approached, according to Thasos Mall REIT Foot Traffic Index.

Growth, as shown by mobile phone usage in malls, had slowed in September and October ahead of the key shopping season.

The SPDR S&P Retail ETF fell 1.2%, while the S&P 500 gained 2.9% over the past month.

The ETF had a 0.66 correlation with the Thasos Index from August 2016 through March 2019, according to Thasos. The ETF is made up of both brick-and-mortar retailers and online businesses like Amazon.com Inc. and GrubHub Inc. By comparison, the Solactive-ProShares Bricks and Mortar Retail Store Index fell 1.99% over the past month.

The Thasos index measures mobile-phone location data from five of the largest U.S. Mail REITS - Simon Property Group Inc., Brookfield Property Partners LP, Macerich Co., Taubman Centers Inc. and Washington Prime Group Inc.

At least 50% of the properties of these five REITs are enclosed malls and shopping centers. Thasos index is updated every Friday with year-over-year traffic growth for the four-week period ending the Saturday prior.

For a graph of Thasos Mall REIT index over the past year, see THMRFOTR US Index.

-With assistance from Bloomberg Global Data

To contact the reporter on this story: Bill Austin in New York at [email protected].

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Foxwell at [email protected]

© 2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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