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Retail representatives report: Holiday sales rates expected to stay strong

October 26, 2013

Multiple representatives of domestic retail organizations have come forward to testify: consumers are planning to spend amounts comparable to recent years at credit card terminals this holiday season.

 

Multiple representatives of domestic retail organizations have come forward to testify: consumers are planning to spend amounts comparable to recent years at credit card terminals this holiday season.

Jim Hallen, president and CEO of the Michigan Retailers Association, recently spoke to the recent TV outlet WILX about consumer sentiment headed into the winter months. He noted that his association is expecting a sales gain of 1.3 percent this year. Hallen suggested that while businesses can not definitely plan on significant sales increases this year, his firm is cautiously optimistic about holiday revenue.

“Consumers and businesses like certainty and we don’t have that direction right now,” Hallen told the news outlet. “People have been a little hesitant and that came forward in our poll. It’s tempered but it’s still a good forecast but certainty from Washington would be helpful.”

Hallen also told WILX that cheaper gas prices and lower unemployment numbers could boost sales ever higher than projected by the time Christmas arrives.

Grant Monahan, the president of the Indiana Retail Council, recently spoke about consumer sentiment during the holiday season. He told the local Fox 59 news outlet that shoppers in his state were reflecting the national average in terms of when they start spending at credit card payment processing registers. He said that more than 40 percent of American consumers – in Indiana and elsewhere – began their holiday shopping before Halloween, despite uncertainty caused by the government shutdown.

“I think any time you see uncertainty in government or a lack of cooperation there it has an impact on consumers,” Monahan told the news outlet. “I think it concerns shoppers and that shows up at the point of sale.”

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