The holiday shopping season has kicked off on a slower note this year, signaling a return to normalcy in the economy. The impact of the pandemic can be seen in the timing of holiday shopping, as evidenced by U.S. retail sales falling for the first time since March. In recent years, holiday shopping would have started as early as September; however, this year that does not seem to be the case.
According to Senior Economist Robert Spendlove, this shift in the timing of holiday shopping is reflective of the economy still being affected by the pandemic. Spendlove draws a comparison between the pandemic and a rock being thrown into a lake – with the ripple effects of its impact still being felt. While the pandemic may be over, we are still dealing with its aftermath. Overall, the economy is slowly returning to normalcy, with improvements being observed in employment data, inflation, and retail spending. However, despite these positive signs, it seems that achieving a soft landing is yet to be achieved.
Despite months-early holiday shopping becoming more common during the height of the pandemic and last-minute shopping not being an option, Spending believes that returning to a more traditional timeline this year is a good sign. With