Despite a rough economic year for everyone, retail sales during the holidays are expected to keep pace, even surpass, growth trends of previous years. According to the Associated Press, the National Retail Federation made this prediction recently to account for the uncertainty of shutdowns caused by the pandemic. For essential businesses like big-box stores, sales growth during lockdown averaged 6.4% gain while non-essential stores forced to shutter during quarantine suffered a severe drop.

MarketScale Radio explores the current state of retail and consumer spending with hosts Daniel LItwin and Tyler Kern. Litwin looks at the unemployment numbers and puzzles where consumer dollars will enter the economy. Kern considers the retail giants that have pivoted to e-commerce and delivery. Regardless, the trickle-down benefits of holiday spending may not show up in local economies due to the success of big box stores and online shopping.


  • NRF predicts sales for the November and December period will increase between 3.6% and 5.2%
  • Big Box stores see over 6% growth in sales during COVID lockdown.
  • Lack of spending on travel and entertainment leaves some discretionary income for holiday spending.