Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Continued Retail Sales Growth Expected in 2017

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Continued Retail Sales Growth Expected in 2017

Article excerpt

The nation's largest retail trade association is predicting the 2016 sales momentum will continue this year, with retail sales expected to increase between 3.7 percent and 4.2 percent. That forecast includes online sales, which are expected to rise by 8 percent to 12 percent.

National Retail Federation Chief Executive Officer Matthew Shay said the economy is "on firm ground as we head into 2017" and that "with jobs and income growing and debt relatively low, the fundamentals are in place and the consumer is in the driver's seat." Shay cautioned that uncertainty about taxes, trade and political issues could suppress spending.

The NRF forecast echoes the 2016 growth rate of 3.75 percent. Retailers as a whole ended the year strongly, with holiday sales up 4 percent compared with 2015. But many traditional bricks-and- mortar and mall-based department stores and clothing chains missed their sales targets for the season. …

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