Market Overview

Retail Expert: Nearly Half Of All Americans Will Go Shopping This Week

Retail Expert: Nearly Half Of All Americans Will Go Shopping This Week

The retail environment will brace itself for nearly half of the entire U.S. population who will shop this week, according to American Apparel and Footwear Association CEO Rick Helfenbein.

Total retail sales for the entire 2019 holiday shopping season could increase by as much as 4% year-over-year to $730 billion, Helfenbein said Tuesday on Fox Business. An estimated 135 million people will shop on Black Friday alone.

Some of the encouraging signs Helfenbein cited to support expectations for strong sales growth include 2 million more Americans are working compared to last year, gas prices are low leaving people with more cash in their pockets and consumer confidence remains "fairly stable."

Why Retail Numbers Are Important

The retail sector has certainly felt some pain from new tariffs but overall the group "navigated through them," Helfenbein said. Some retailers can blame tariffs for their poor performance, but those who are closing stores could also be the result of failing to reach the "new millennial customer," he said.

U.S. President Donald Trump was able to leverage tariffs to force his Chinese counterparts to the negotiating table, he said. As such, tariffs "served its purpose" and if trade talks proceed in the right direction its elimination will support the economy even more.

"We got to have these tariffs go away," he said. "It's time."

Related Links:

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