Has Black Friday pushed the US economy into overdrive?

4th December 2014 By: Ranko Berich

US Retail Sales – 04/12/14

The importance of retail spending for US growth can’t be overemphasised and although investment has been booming, consumer spending remains the cornerstone of the country’s economy.

Retailers and markets alike have staked a lot on strong consumer spending this holiday period, with traders strengthening USD and retailers going on a hiring spree in anticipation of a bumper Black Friday shopping period.

Initial snapshots of spending indicate that, despite the hype, Black Friday may have been a dud in stores, with headline weekend spending falling 11 per cent from last year. But, November retail sales as a whole may still impress. Shoppers now have a wider range of purchase options and retail spending may be spread over both November and December, instead of one concentrated burst following thanksgiving.

We will have a clearer picture of retail sales once online sales and the entire month are taken into account. With both consumer and business confidence already high, any sign of strong growth in consumer spending has the potential to push the US economy into overdrive.