This past holiday season, expectation on higher sales missed as the shopper spent less during that season.
National Retail Foundation said on Thursday that sales during the holiday season went up by just 2.9 percent in 2018. The NRF’s statement came after announcement of retail sales by Commerce Department, which reported that during the month of December, retail sales fell by 1.2 percent and described it the largest fall experienced by the retail industry since September 2009.
NRF, which is a trade organization of retail industry, on the other hand had been calling for holiday sales to rise between 4.3 and 4.8 percent made by the consumers in 2018 holiday season from November 1 through December 31.
The declined sales highlights the impact of trade war and confused stock market that hurt the consumer behavior more than what was expected, NRF President and CEO Matt Shay said in a statement.
But he also raised a question upon the reliability of the results as these are based on the data collected after a long delay due to the government shutdown.
For past holiday season, NRF stated that online and other nonstore sales rose by 11.5 percent, while it was expecting of growth between 11 and 15 percent for that.
Year-over-year in-store and online sales declined by 1.5 percent in November but remained above just 0.9 percent in December. The statement also added that October sales, though not included in its holiday sales tally, were rose by 5.7 percent year-over-year.
Jack Kleinhenz, Chief Economist at NRF, said that the sales results have made them surprised but these are also contradictory to the consumer’s spending behavior which NRF remained monitoring during the holiday season.
Despite Commerce Department’s fresh retail sales data Top of Form
Bottom of Form
is pointing towards a slump, but NRF is still calling for retail sales to be rise between 3.8 and 4.4 percent this year to $3.84 trillion, which excludes sales from gasoline stations, restaurants and automobile dealers.