Holiday Retail Sales Increase 3.8 Percent

Wednesday, January 15, 2014 by

Retail, Jobs, NRF, Small Business, Holidays, Christmas

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In spite of severe weather conditions nationwide and shaky consumer confidence, total holiday retail sales, which include November and December, increased 3.8 percent to $601.8 billion.

On October 3rd, 2013, the National Retail Federation projected that in November and December, sales would increase 3.9 percent to $602.1 billion.

With the challenge of a shortened holiday season (a total of six fewer shopping days in 2013), retailers launched heavy discounts and consistent promotions, which encouraged last minute shopping and steady streams of purchases through the days leading up to Christmas.

“Retail sales have been volatile all year and the holiday shopping season was no exception,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Solid job growth in the months of October and November led to a more-confident consumer and healthy holiday shopping season for many retailers. While economic and policy uncertainties remain, the economy seems set for steady growth in the New Year.”

Online sales continued to show their place in the holiday retail sector, as consumers turned to their smartphones, tablets, and computers to make holiday purchases. Online and e-commerce sales rose 9.3 percent this holiday season, to $95.7 billion.

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