State Sales Tax Numbers: The Truth Appears

Leave it to the WSJ to report the truth – and then try to paper over it:

Sales taxes declined 9% to $70 billion in the third quarter compared with the year-ago period, the Census Bureau said. Income taxes plunged 12% to about $58 billion. Together, sales and income taxes make up roughly half of state and local tax revenue.

The WSJ then goes on to opine:

State and local tax revenues tend to lag behind the downturns as well as the upturns in the economy because of the time it takes for collections to catch up with depressed store sales and diminished incomes.

This is true for income taxes.

It is absolutely false when it comes to sales taxes.

As someone who ran a registered establishment for more than a decade that was responsible for filing and paying sales taxes (I signed more returns “under penalty of perjury” than I can count during those years!) I can state that it is an absolute fact that sales tax returns are filed and monies are remitted MONTHLY – if there is an upturn in business – an actual upturn – it shows up NOT MORE THAN ONE MONTH LATER in sales tax receipts.  Period.

There has been no recovery in final retail demand and the proof is right here in the form of sales tax remittances.

Don’t be fooled.