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How we shop now

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A once busy shopping district in Manhattan stands nearly empty of pedestrians on August 12, 2020 in New York City.

A once busy shopping district in Manhattan stands nearly empty of pedestrians on August 12, 2020 in New York City. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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A lot of us are indulging in a little retail therapy right now.

In fact, retail sales in July were up 2.7% year over year as Americans flocked to home improvement stores and took up new hobbies while in lockdown. You might be drawn to a new flower bed or, say, model trains — we don’t know your life — but that fancy chopped salad place by your office suddenly looks like a relic of a very different time.

Today we’ll spend some time talking with Marketplace retail reporter Marielle Segarra about how our spending habits have changed six months into the coronavirus pandemic and what shifts are yet to come.

Later, we’ll talk about American dystopias real and fictional, hear from a listener who works at a university about how they prepared for the school year, and apply rigorous logic to a Kiss song.

When you’re done listening, tell your Echo device to “make me smart” for our daily explainers. Plus, don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter! You can find the latest issue here.

Here’s a list of everything we talked about today:

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