HdL HeadLines calls out retail trends affecting the economy and HdL news to provide you with insight and support in your budget preparation and economic planning.

 

 

U.S. Retail Sales Unexpectedly Rise 0.6% in June

U.S. retail sales unexpectedly increased 0.6% in June as demand for goods remained strong even as spending is shifting back to services, bolstering expectations that economic growth accelerated in the second quarter. Sales surged 18.0% compared to June last year and are now well above their pre-pandemic level. Specifically, spending in areas such as entertainment and travel rose to match the needs of the 160 million vaccinated in the United States.

 

Used-Car Frenzy Makes for Record Prices, ‘Cutthroat’ Sales Floor

The used-car lot, ordinarily a haven of haggling and wheeling-and-dealing, is now a hotbed for wallet-busting transactions. Soaring used-car prices accounted for more than one-third of the recent increase in the consumer price index, which in June rose at the fastest rate in 13 years. A rush of buyers enjoying loosening pandemic restrictions has put demand in overdrive even as inventory on dealer lots is already running thin. Average used-car prices reached a record $26,457 last month, up almost 30% from the beginning of last year, according to automotive researcher Edmunds.com.

 

Consumers Embrace Physical Retail as U.S. Emerges from Pandemic

As more Americans are vaccinated, mask-wearing is becoming less common, plexiglass barriers are being taken down, social-distancing floor decals are being removed and consumers are opening their wallets. While it might be tempting to view this as a return to “business as usual,” the reality is that consumers’ interest in and expectations for in-store shopping have been permanently altered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Despite Online Growth, Stores Will Still Account for Three-Fourths of Retail Sales in 2024

E-commerce in the U.S. boasted its greatest growth rate since 2002, increasing by 30% in 2020. Spending patterns shifted from services and travel to products, boosting the economy despite the challenging conditions the pandemic produced. However, by the year 2024, research firm Forrester projects 72% of retail will still take place offline.

 

Store Closures Decline for the First Time in 2021

For the first time in 2021, store closures have declined year over year, according to a  report from Coresight Research. There have been 5.7% fewer closures so far in 2021 than in 2020, while opening rates increased 41.8% when compared to the same period in 2020. The surge in openings this year compared to last is a sign that retailers are confident in the future of their business.

 

Total E-Commerce Sales During Amazon Prime Day Surpass $11 Billion

Total online retail sales in the United States during Amazon’s 48-hour Prime Day surpassed $11 billion — 6.1% higher than overall e-commerce transactions generated by the 2020 event, according to Adobe Analytics data. The index Adobe Analytics tracked looks at more than 1 trillion visits to U.S. retail sites and over 100 million items across 18 product categories.

 

 

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