Bloomberg reports that "US retail sales rose at the strongest pace in three months in December, capping a solid holiday season that suggests consumer resilience heading into the new year.
"The value of retail purchases, unadjusted for inflation, increased 0.6% in a broad-based advance, Commerce Department data showed Wednesday. Excluding autos, sales rose 0.4% … Nine of 13 categories posted increases, with the biggest gains in clothing, general merchandise stores — which include department stores — and e-commerce."
Bloomberg writes that "the figures cap a year in which household spending largely surprised to the upside, confounding economists’ calls for a recession. However, forecasters see that momentum fading in 2024 as consumers contend with lingering inflation, elevated borrowing costs and waning savings."
- KC's View:
Just curious. Did those same forecasters suggest that we'd be mired in recession right now?
I understand that we're not out of the woods yet, and there remain a lot of people in the US who do not feel that things have gotten better, even if the numbers clearly demonstrate that the economy is moving in the right direction. The momentum has to be maintained, to the point that perceptions begin to match reality.