December 29th, 2005
Reports on US chain store sales suggest an improvement after a lacklustre start of the end-of-year shopping season.
Amazon reported strong sales fueled by demand for jewellery, video games and iPod’s.
Wal-Mart said it is on track to meet its forecast when it releases sales next week after recording its biggest shopping day of the year on Friday and not Saturday like it had expected as shoppers picked up last-minute gifts.
The International Council of Shopping Centers said retail chain store sales rose 3.9% from the same period last year, while sales for the month and the holiday season were on track to post a moderate 3.0 to 3.5% increase over the same period last year.
A report by Redbook Research showed retail sales increased 3.7% in December compared with the same month last year, although they were flat compared to November.
With US consumer confidence in December and expectations for next year picking up and retail sales improving, the season may finish on a more cheerful note.
Most major US retail chains will release their December sales results next week