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Meet the American consumer: anxious yet spend-happy
Feb 17, 2023

Meet the American consumer: anxious yet spend-happy

People are worried about inflation and a recession, but retail sales are strong. What gives? Plus, checking in on the FCC's broadband map.

Segments From this episode

The Weekly Wrap

Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal talks to Jordyn Holman of the New York Times and Kate Davidson of Bloomberg about corporate retail, so-called “bumpy data” and the rest of the week’s economic news.

Consumers say they're worried about the economy, but retail sales are strong

Feb 17, 2023
Data released this week shows there’s a disconnect between what people say and what they do.
"Affordable luxuries" — like an afternoon treat from Starbucks — "can actually increase in sales because of the stressful moments that people have in their lives," said Yale's Ravi Dhar.
Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Valentine's Day chocolate sales were strong ... but it'd be helpful if you shopped earlier

Feb 17, 2023
"It's fun but it's difficult to know how much to make when everyone comes in on the same day," said Kristin Thalheimer Bingham, co-owner of Dean's Sweets in Portland, Maine.
Of all the holidays, Valentine's Day is the biggest chocolate-seller for Dean's Sweets.
Courtesy Melissa Mullen Photography

Did telecoms overreport their broadband coverage in underserved areas?

Feb 17, 2023
The federal infrastructure law provided $40 billion to bring internet access to every American. But some communities still have none.
The FCC's map of broadband service relies on telecom companies' data, which may be aspirational in certain areas, according to some experts.
trumzz/Getty Images

Will that kitchen remodel pay for itself when you sell your house?

Feb 17, 2023
Most home improvement projects don't break even, a new study says. But the value of an upgrade may be more than financial.
A desire for dedicated office space "blossomed" into a major renovation at Matt Hampton's house in suburban Baltimore.
Amy Scott/Marketplace

The team

Nancy Farghalli Executive Producer
Daisy Palacios Senior Producer
Sean McHenry Associate Producer
Andie Corban Associate Producer
Richard Cunningham Associate Producer