Oct 6, 2022
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U.S. shoppers set to spend more this Holiday season despite inflation woes: KPMG

Oct 6, 2022

U.S. shoppers are set to spend more this Holiday season, with a shopper's average spend increasing by 6% on last year, despite most shoppers worried about inflation leading up to the busy period.

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The ​average holiday spend for American consumers will be $1,072, 6% higher than in 2021, according to KPMG’s Consumer Pulse Survey: Holiday 2022 report. Compared to last year, however, the increased spending for the remainder of 2022 will only go essential categories rather than discretionary categories, as consumers' choices continue to remain reactive to inflation.

“While consumers remain resilient and plan to spend a bit more this holiday season, it will likely not outpace inflation,” said Matt Kramer, KPMG consumer and retail national sector leader.

“Consumers will be looking for promotions this holiday season and retailers should be looking to respond by having desirable gifts for the budget-conscious consumer."

By channel, ​online retail is expected to remain relatively flat across categories, pointing to a preference to return to physical stores. For offline retail, most holiday shoppers are extremely likely or likely to shop at mass market retailers (73%) and discount stores (56%) this year.

In the midst of a forecasted increase in consumer spending, the top three concerns for holiday shoppers this season are inflation (85%), stockouts (63%) and shipping delays (57%). Of those concerned about inflation, 37% said they would be buying fewer gifts per person, while 34% were planning to purchase less expensive items.

By category, retail gift cards (52%) and apparel (55%) are the two most popular gift categories.

The report said that ​Holiday shoppers are expected to get an early start on their shopping, with 52% starting in October or earlier, compared to last year when 61% started in October or earlier, with concerns of stockouts, or in 2020.

Moreover, most holiday shoppers plan on shopping Black Friday (60%) and approximately 50% plan on shopping Cyber Monday.

The forecast comes on the back a retail sales uptick in September of 0.3%, lifted by back-to-school shopping, following a 9.1% uptick in August.

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