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Despite inflation and interest rate increases, experts predict stronger Christmas sales



Little Rock, Arkansas – The final day of the holiday countdown has come! How will your purchases be impacted by this year’s six interest rate hikes and inflation, though?

The National Retail Federation predicts that consumers will continue to spend money.

The NRF predicted that holiday retail sales will increase by between $942.6 billion and $960.4 billion in November and December, or between 6% and 8% over 2021.

The NRF forecasted that sales of goods and services purchased online and through other non-store channels would rise by 10% to 12%, amounting to $262.8 billion to $267.6 billion.

The owner of Pine Olive in Little Rock’s SoMa neighborhood, Grace Kang, expressed her excitement about the increased foot traffic this season.

“I do 100% believe that people will come out, be present, and want to physically be able to pick out the gifts for the people they love,” Kang said.

She still thinks that despite the problems with inflation, people will still spend money on presents for their loved ones.

“People are still buying homes, people are still living their lives, so I think they’re more conscious and mindful about how they are buying, but they still [are] spending money,” she described.

Many businesses benefited from internet sales during the pandemic, but Kang is prepared for a more usual shopping season.

“As much as I love the online business, there is nothing that will really replace that in-person connection,” Kang said.

Even though analysts expect Christmas retail sales to trend upward, Kang said she will keep working to make sure that products are accessible and inexpensive for customers.

“You don’t need to break the bank to buy something special for people that you love,” Kang added. “If we can provide a little choice for people and make their lives just a little bit easier, we’re doing our thing.”

In addition, the NRF anticipates that between 450,000 and 600,000 seasonal employees will be hired by stores nationwide.

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