Happy Holidays for U.S. Consumers and the Retail Sector

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With Christmas falling on a Monday this year, U.S. consumers and their families were awarded ample time to convene, celebrate and shop together. MasterCard’s SpendingPulse, which tracks online and in-store spending, reported that holiday sales increased 4.9% this year - which is the largest year-over-year increase since 2011 and a new record for dollars spent. Even though the most recent release of the University of Michigan's December Survey of Consumers Sentiment Index edged down for the month of December, the yearly average of this confidence index remains at high levels last seen since the early 2000's. These results indicate that U.S. consumers are still flush with confidence and are willing to boldly spend given the strength of the U.S. economy and unemployment rates at cyclical lows. Track how the consumer is a game changer on page 13 of the Global Perspectives book.

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