U.S. retail sales rose 7.9 percent this holiday season between Black Friday and Christmas Eve, according to MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse.
The ‘solid’ growth of U.S. retail sales, which exclude automobiles and gas, was boosted by the strong online sales and strong demand for women’s apparel and furniture.
One reason for the solid growth is the delay of cold weather. Many part of the country remained very warm in fall, so women’s clothing has been selling poorly at that time. The clothing demand was pushed back in winter, which was exactly the holiday season.
The other reason is the cheaper oil price. Oil price was down a lot this year. Consumers benefit a lot from the cheap oil. They spent more money to buy big-ticket items like furniture because they collected extra cash from cheap gas prices. Consumers spent 72 cents of every dollar they saved from lower fuel costs, according to MasterCard.
"The double-digit growth in furniture sales shows that consumers are willing and able to splurge on big ticket items," Sarah Quinlan, senior vice president of Market Insights at MasterCard Advisors, said in the report.
Online sales continue its rapid growth. It rose 20 percent in the holiday season this year, according to MasterCard Advisors report this Monday.