U.S. Outlook: Will consumers keep spending over the holidays?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist

Next week is the all-important kickoff of the holiday shopping season, with the four most important shopping days of the year.

Graph showing growth, declines in various retail sales categoriesWhat percentage of the population plans to shop during the Thanksgiving weekend that includes Black Friday and Cyber Monday?

For more on this, see highlights of my report below, followed by a link to the full U.S. Outlook, delivered on Nov. 17.

Key observations:

  • The retail sales data through October show a consumer who is ready and willing to spend this holiday season.
  • The fact that retail sales for October continued to climb after a huge gain in spending during September bodes well for holiday sales.
  • Income growth continues to lag consumer spending.
  • We are forecasting nearly 3% real consumer spending growth in the fourth quarter.

Read my full report.

 

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U.S. Outlook: What is going on with bank credit?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Graph showing recent dip in commercial bank lending

You would think banks would be busy making new loans in this sort of economic and financial environment, but you would be wrong.

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U.S. Outlook: Let the tax reform fight begin

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
US Capitol dome seen in middle distance on a sunny fall day with lawn and reddish-leaf trees in the foreground.

We are finally getting some concrete details on the size and shape of the likely tax reform package that is moving through the House.

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Instant Analysis: Employment report for October

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
4 workers sitting around table using their laptops next to large window through which nearby skyscrapers are visible.

we see the net 261K gain in jobs as evidence that the U.S. labor market is swiftly resuming its solid monthly pace of job creation.

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Instant Analysis: FOMC statement for November

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Closeup of intricate window designs on the Federal Reserve building.

The message from the FOMC this month is no change in monetary policy plans, with the economy and inflation evolving close to our expectations.

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