Why yes, it’s time to start talking about holiday shopping. This morning the National Retail Federation predicted modest growth for our holiday shopping this year, up about four percent. An increase of four percent doesn’t exactly seem like gangbusters, but is it?
Juli Neiman, analyst with Smith Moore & Company, says since 70 percent of the economy is driven by consumer spending, four or five percent growth is good, but “we’ve got a shopping list of anxieties — jobs, debt, housing, elections, fiscal cliff.”
Amidst this economic uncertainty, consumers are still expected to kick off their holiday shopping on schedule, starting with Halloween. Neiman says a majority of Americans spend on Halloween, “about $72-$73, that’s about $8 billion. The fastest growing segment is not candy, but $20 dog costumes.”
In addition we are likely to see solid end of the year performance for automakers, “we’ve got a lot of pent up demand — the average age of an auto is about 11 years old — and nearly free financing is luring in shoppers,” says Neiman.
We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.
Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.
In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.
Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.