Retail market fundamentals remained optimistic as companies worked to gain traction after the pause in activity during the
pandemic. The metro area unemployment rate increased 100 basis points (BPS) over last quarter as the area labor force dwindled
from displaced workers leaving the workforce. Leisure and hospitality services were among industries most affected. The 10-year
Treasury note yield rose 2.5 BPS to 1.74%, an increase of 29 BPS at the end of the first quarter, marking its largest gain since the
fourth quarter of 2016. Some of the gain is due to new Treasury debt to fund stimulus checks accompanied by a boost in economic
growth and inflation but this did not hinder retail investors confidence. Gross domestic product increased over the fourth quarter
of 2020, reflecting the continued economic recovery from the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic giving the local market
confidence in retail demand moving forward.