U.S. retail sales to grow as much as 8% in 2022: NRF
The National Retail Federation (NRF) on Tuesday said it expects retail sales in the U.S. to grow as much as 8% in 2022, with the national retail body suggesting that Americans are ready to spend and have the resources to do so.
Speaking at its annual State of Retail & the Consumer virtual event, the NRF said it anticipates that retail sales will grow between 6 percent and 8 percent to more than $4.86 trillion in 2022, thanks to increased consumer confidence, and expected strong job and wage growth and declining unemployment.
“The NRF expects retail sales to increase in 2022, as consumers are ready to spend and have the resources to do so,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said.
“We should see durable growth this year given consumer confidence to continue this expansion, notwithstanding risks related to inflation, Covid-19 and geopolitical threats.”
Up close, the NRF forecasts that 2022 retail sales will total between $4.86 trillion and $4.95 trillion, excluding automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants.
Non-store and online sales year-over-year, which are included in the total figure, are expected to grow between 11 percent and 13 percent to a range of $1.17 trillion to $1.19 trillion as "consumers continue to utilise e-commerce," the NRF added.
While retail sales are expected to remain strong as the economy continues to open further in the coming months, there still remains considerable uncertainty about the year ahead.
“Most households have never experienced anything like this level of inflation, and it is expected to remain elevated well into 2023,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “In addition to inflation, the forces impacting the economy include Covid-19 impacts, international tensions and policy variability."
The 2022 forecast figure comes on the back of 14% annual growth rate in 2021, the highest growth rate in more than 20 years.
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