COLDEST APRIL IN 5 YEARS CONTINUED TO LIMIT SPRING PURCHASING
May 6, 2013
Source: Planalytics report
The Most Snowfall Since 1983 Kept the Central U.S. Longing for Spring. Heavy Rain Across the Southeast.
Averaged across the U.S., April 2013 was the coolest since 2008, and cooler than normal. Precipitation was 42% greater than last year and much above normal. April snowfall was the most since 1983. In Canada, temperatures were cooler than both last year and normal. Precipitation and snowfall were each below last year. For reference, April 2012 in the U.S. was the 3rd warmest in 118 years and drier than normal. April 2012 in Canada was warmer and wetter than normal.
Significant Weather Events:
Cool temperatures and late season snow across the Central U.S. drove most of the headlines in April. Warmth was focused in the West.
April began with a brief spell of record heat across the Mid-Atlantic region. Baltimore reached 91°F while New York City registered 83°F, driving demand for shorts and iced coffee. While the East experienced a quick period of "instant Summer," several inches of snow fell in Denver, Minneapolis, and Green Bay. Canada had its coolest week 1 of April since 1997 and wettest since 2002.
Heavy precipitation captured the headlines during week 2, which was the wettest since 1969. While rain was focused in the Eastern half of the continent, snowfall continued in the Rockies and Upper Midwest. Week 2 temperatures in the U.S. were the coolest since 2009, while Canada was coolest since 2000.
Week 3 was the coolest in the U.S. since 1988. Heavy rain fell across the Central Plains and mid-Mississippi Valley, while snow and flooding impacted the Midwest. The West North Central region recorded its snowiest 3rd week of April in over 50 years. The Pacific region was the only area to trend warmer than normal.
Cooler conditions to last year in the U.S. continued during week 4. Late season snow fell across the Rockies, Upper Midwest, and Central Plains. The Southeast experienced heavy rain, while the Southwest remained the focus for warmer temperatures. Canada had its warmest end to April since 2001, with the least precipitation since 1989.
The month was also notable for its lack of severe weather, with the fewest number of confirmed reports for April since current records began in 2000.
"Late season snowfall in interior locations continued to limit demand for Spring apparel as well as outdoor related purchases. While there were periods of warmth in most locations, the strongest opportunities for weather driven demand was out West." said Scott Bernhardt, President of Planalytics.
The West North Central region had its coolest April since 1997, and the West South Central region was coolest since 1998.
Denver had its coolest April in over 50 years. Kansas City, Oklahoma City, and Minneapolis were coolest since 1997; Houston since 1998.
The Pacific region was warmest since 2004. The Mid-Atlantic and East North Central regions were warmest since 2010.
Sacramento was warmest since 1990, Phoenix and San Francisco since 1992.
In Canada, Winnipeg had its coldest April in over 50 years.
Precipitation and Snowfall Callouts:
Precipitation in the U.S. was much above both last year and normal.
Chicago and Minneapolis were wettest in over 50 years; Atlanta since 1979.
New York City was driest since 1970.
Precipitation in Canada was below normal, although above last year.
Toronto was wettest since 1992, while Ottawa was driest since 2001.
Snowfall in the U.S. was the most since 1983 and significantly above normal. Canada snowfall was below normal.
Denver had its most snow for April in over 50 years; Minneapolis had its most since 1983. Quebec City had its most snow since 1996, Winnipeg since 1999.