November retail sales increase only slightly
Amidst all of the shopping frenzy that happened on Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the days in between, national retail sales only rose slightly during November. However, many merchants are still optimistic, as consumer confidence has risen to record high levels, which retailers are hoping will lead to stronger sales over the next month.
According to the Los Angeles Times, a recently released report by Thomson Reuters, which analyzed the November sales amounts of 17 large retailers, found that retail sales only increased by 1.7 percent from the same time a year ago. This was a disappointment after analysts had predicted a 3.3 percent rise. The Thomson Reuters study stated that Hurricane Sandy had a significant impact on these totals. However, conditions should improve next month as the holiday shopping season continues.
This is certainly what retailers throughout the country are hoping for. High levels in consumer optimism might be what is needed to give the economy the solid holiday purchasing season it needs. Businessweek reports that according to the recent Conference Board index, consumer confidence is at 73.7, the highest it has been in more than four years.
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