A weekly report of retail sales activity in the largest U.S. retail stores. The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi Ltd. and UBS Warburg compile sales figures from stores that have been open for one year or longer, called same-store sales. The seven stores that are surveyed for their sales activity are Target, Federated, JC Penney, Eckerd, May Department Stores, Sears, and Wal-Mart. The chain store sales index shows a percentage change from the previous week and previous year. It is timely and it closely tracks changes in consumer spending; however, its volatility can limit its impact, so the monthly chain sales number is more closely watched. The importance of chain store sales increases during the holiday selling season. The data is released every Tuesday morning unless there is a holiday during the week, in which case it is likely to be released on Wednesday.