Consumer spending is up this holiday season despite economy
BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Prices are still high but that hasn’t stopped many folks from breaking out their wallets and spending some of that hard-earned money during the holidays.
“Well, we just got the numbers from MasterCard, spenders are up 7.6% over last year so people are spending their money. The biggest day of the year is Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving. those sales were up 12% over the previous year’s Black Friday sales,” said local financial advisor Fred Dent.
That’s good news to hear, especially in the midst of an economy that’s seen brighter days.
And with COVID out of sight and out of mind for most, restaurants caught the biggest break with 15% more people eating out this year than last.
“Well, there’s no question the consumer is spending, it’s going to be a question of as we go into the new year what happens with existing debt load for putting it on credit cards. People have to pay the piper and maybe they’ll cut back spending then,” Dent explained.
Though it was more expensive than usual, shoppers said their holiday shopping was still a success with most of it being done online.
“It was more expensive for sure. Most of it, probably 80% online,” said one shopper.
“Yea I’ve been trying to do a good job this year of budgeting myself and keeping the paper in my wallet where it belongs. But me, definitely online. I feel like most people do it online now,” said another shopper.
Actually, according to the same data from MasterCard, online sales have stayed around 20-21% for the last three years while the other 80% continue to shop in-store. Fred Dent also points out supply chain issues are slowly starting to go away, leaving many businesses with a lot of products on their shelves.
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And because businesses have been able to get more of their products quicker over the last several months, shoppers can expect to see a lot of sales during 2023 to help get them off the shelves.
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