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Retail Sales: Introduction

The information in this report is based on tax returns (form ST-1) of sales and use tax permit holders from the Minnesota Department of Revenue. Data is categorized by retail store type based on U.S. Standard Industrial Classification and assigned an industry code according to the principal business activity reported.

Retail stores operating at more than one location have the option of filing one return for each establishment or a single consolidated return for all establishments. The consolidated returns show, for each business establishment: sales made, tax due and location by city and county. Data for both filing systems was combined to produce the information in this report.

Profiles are available for these retail store types:

  • Building materials, hardware, garden supplies
  • General merchandise
  • Food
  • Automotive dealers and service stations
  • Apparel and accessory
  • Furniture and home furnishings
  • Eating and drinking establishments
  • Miscellaneous retail

    Two profiles are available online. The first illustrates eight retail store types and their SIC code, gross sales, percent of total retail sales and number of establishments. The second profile allows a user to create a trend-line profile for any of the eight retail store types.

    Caution: Changes made to the sales tax processing system between 1993 and 1994 affect city data comparability. Before 1993, city designations were based on the location identified by the business at the time of registration. From 1994 on, business addresses were verified and standardized by computer. In some cases, addresses were changed to meet post office requirements. Data since 1994 is generally useful for trend analysis but will not consistently report businesses within the exact city limits.

    Portions of this text are excerpted from the Department of Revenue's Minnesota Sales and Use Tax, 1994 Annual Report. A copy of this report can be viewed at

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