Nik Rajkovic /

Michigan retailers report low January sales, but a positive future outlook. The state retailers association says last month's sales landed at 48, which isn't great.

"People are shopping, but they're not out shopping enough for retailers to be hitting that magical 50-points on our 100-point scale," says MRA spokeswoman Andrea Bitely.

The January 2023 Retail Index came in at 53.8, indicating a 10.8 percent decrease year-over-year.

As part of the survey, retailers were asked about their Holiday 2023 returns. Eighty-eight percent responded that Holiday 2023 returns were on par with Holiday 2022 returns.

Nearly two-thirds of Michigan retailers still expect positive sales heading into summer.

"When we get into March, April and May, we start to see people getting out of the house more, and spending on spring cleanup or new shoes," she says.

"We start to see people getting ready for those summer vacations and those family trips."

Bitely urges Michiganders to continue buying locally, from mom-and-pop shops along Grand River, to choosing Meijer over other large outlets.