US retail sales grow 3.1% during holiday season – Mastercard report


Washington, Dec. 26 (BNA): U.S. retail sales rose 3.1% between Nov. 1 and Dec. 24, rounding up a majority of the holiday sales for retailers, as shoppers looked for last-minute Christmas deals amid big promotions, a Mastercard report showed on Tuesday.

 

According to Reuters, the increase is lower than the 3.7% growth Mastercard (MA.N) forecast in September, and has slumped from last year’s 7.6% as higher interest rates and inflation pressured consumer spending.

 

In the United States, Amazon.com and Walmart (WMT.N) have ramped up promotions through November to entice bargain-hunting shoppers, but analysts have said the discounts were not as deep as the prior year, when retailers were saddled with excess stock.

 

Some of those discounts were rolled back starting December, when customers had expected to buy last-minute gifts and household goods on the Saturday before Christmas – dubbed “Super Saturday”.

 

Ecommerce sales grew at a slower pace of 6.3% from last year’s 10.6% as the popularity of online shopping came off pandemic highs, the report showed.

 

Sales in the apparel and restaurant categories rose 2.4% and 7.8%, respectively, during the holiday shopping period, according to the Mastercard SpendingPulse report, while sales of electronics fell 0.4%.

 

Mastercard SpendingPulse measures in-store and online retail sales across all forms of payment. It excludes automotive sales.

 

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