State taxable sales up 4.3 percent; Clark County up 5.2 percent

State revenue collected from taxable sales rose 4.3 percent in October to $3.67 billion, with 11 of 17 counties showing annual increases, the Nevada Department of Taxation reported Wednesday.

Clark County's taxable sales rose 5.2 percent to $2.66 billion in October. Year-to-date taxable sales are up 5.9 percent to $10.49 billion, the state agency reported.

The largest increases in October taxable sales were seen by merchant wholesalers, durable goods, up 22.2 percent; motor vehicle and parts dealers, up 16.8 percent; clothing and clothing accessories stores, up 12.6 percent; building material and garden equipment and supplies, up 10.7 percent; and specialty trade contractors, up 24.5 percent.

Tyler Corder, chief financial officer of Henderson-based Findlay Automotive Group, said new- and used-vehicle sales have increased every year since 2009. Findlay's sales are up 23 percent from the prior year through November, with new-car sales up 35 percent and used-car sales up 9 percent, he said.

"We thought we'd be a little slower because of home prices still being depressed, so we're seeing better results than we expected from the overall economy," Corder said.

The automobile industry is seeing pent-up demand from consumers who delayed new car purchases during the recession, he said. The average age for U.S. cars and light trucks reached an all-time high of 11 years in 2012, Southfield, Mich.-based automotive data company Polk Automotive said.

"The other thing that has an impact on sales is availability of credit," Corder said. "A lot of lenders with cash are looking for a place to loan it, and that makes credit a lot more available."

Gross revenue collections from sales and use taxes amounted to $287.7 million in October, a 6.5 percent increase from a year ago and 6 percent increase for the first four months of fiscal 2013.

Compared with the Economic Forum's November projections, through the first four months of the new fiscal year, cigarette taxes are 3.2 percent, or $2.6 million, above projections. Other tobacco products are down 0.1 percent, or $10,000.

The liquor tax is down 1.8 percent, or $751,000, from fiscal projections, while the live entertainment tax is up 0.8 percent at $1.24 million.


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