NEW YORK (AP) - A retail data service says Superstorm Sandy knocked off nearly $4 billion of retail sales last week in the hard-hit Mid-Atlantic and Northeast region, nearly 20 percent of the usual total.
MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse says Tuesday that the region, which accounts for about 24 percent of retail sales nationwide, typically generates $18.7 billion in sales for the week ended Saturday. But revenue came in at about $15 billion. The figures exclude auto sales.
MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse tracks spending across all forms of payment, including cash.
Superstorm Sandy slammed into the Northeast on Oct. 29, disrupting business activity up and down the Eastern Seaboard and causing stores to close due to power outages, flooding and other problems. Meanwhile, many shoppers stayed close to home because of the weather and gas shortages.