Sales At U.S. Retailers Seen Bringing Holiday Cheer To End 2017

by MR Magazine Staff

Americans probably brought the holiday spirit in abundance to retailers last month, marking a strong finish to 2017. Receipts climbed another solid 0.5 percent in December after a 0.8 percent jump a month earlier that reflected broad-based gains, according to the median projection in a Bloomberg survey of economists before Friday’s release from the Commerce Department. Compared with a year earlier, sales in November were up 5.8 percent, the most since March 2012. The government’s data on Friday are preceded by weekly indicators that have shown sturdy holiday-consumption patterns at merchants. The Retail Economist-Goldman Sachs index of retail sales advanced 3.3 percent in the week ended Dec. 23 compared with the same period a year earlier. Separate figures from Johnson Redbook showed a 5.7 percent increase that same week, the most since July 2014. “2017 holiday sales on a seasonally-adjusted basis from the last week of October through the final week before Christmas posted their strongest growth since the 2012 holiday season, based on the TRE-GS weekly index,” Michael Niemira, chief economist of The Retail Economist LLC, said in a Dec. 27 statement. Read more at Bloomberg.