Oct 27 (Reuters) - U.S. holiday sales could rise over 10%
this year, a trade body said on Wednesday, as major consumer
goods makers and retailers work to prevent supply chain
disruptions from leaving shelves empty of in-demand toys and
The National Retail Federation (NRF) forecast sales to
increase between 8.5% and 10.5%, to between $843.4 billion and
$859 billion, during November and December, compared with a
previous high of $777.3 billion last year.
Rising income and household savings have never been stronger
and would help people pay more for goods at a time when
companies have raised prices to deal with inflation, the NRF
said. It added there is exceptional demand for holiday products
this year, although a survey last week had showed customers were
worried about availability.
"If retailers can keep merchandise on the shelves and
merchandise arrives before Christmas, it could be a stellar
holiday sales season," NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said.
NRF also said the arrival of international travelers https://www.reuters.com/world/us/us-outline-nov-8-international-travel-reopening-vaccination-rules-2021-10-25
would further drive sales higher.
"That's going to give a jolt to the retail side, because
there is a high correlation between international travelers and
tourism in the U.S., and retail sales," NRF President Matthew
Shay told reporters.
Several retailers had also begun their holiday selling as
early as September, warning their customers their favorite items
could sell out or delivery could take longer than usual.
"There may be some categories in which there will be some
shortages or which consumers will need to do some switching or
trading ... they won't go home empty-handed," Shay said.
Amazon.com Inc has secured more shipping storage,
while Levi Strauss & Co and Crocs Inc have
been redirecting their goods to come in through East Coast
ports, away from the congested West Coast.
(Reporting by Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru; Editing by
Krishna Chandra Eluri)