Deloitte: Holiday retail sales expected to increase between 3.5% to 4.6%

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Holiday retail sales are likely to increase between 3.5% and 4.6% in 2023, according to Deloitte’s annual holiday retail forecast.

Overall, Deloitte’s retail and consumer products practice projects holiday sales will total $1.54 to $1.56 trillion during the November to January timeframe. In 2022, holiday sales grew by 7.6% in the same period.

Deloitte also forecasts e-commerce sales will grow between 10.3% to 12.8%, year-over-year, during the 2023-2024 holiday season. This will likely result in e-commerce holiday sales reaching between $278 billion and $284 billion this season.

“We expect healthy employment and income growth to keep the volume of sales growing for the 2023 holiday season,” said Daniel Bachman, Deloitte’s U.S. economic forecaster. “Inflation, which accounted for much of the increase in the value of retail sales last year, should moderate. This means the total value of retail sales will grow more slowly than last year. Our forecast also reflects a decreasing pool of pandemic-era savings, both of which will weigh on retail sales and are reflected in our lower projected growth for the season.”

“Retail sales are expected to increase even as higher prices continue to create a battle for consumer spending. A sharp rise in spending on services post-pandemic shows signs of leveling off since last year, and compared to pre-pandemic levels, spending on durable goods remains high,” said Nick Handrinos, vice chair, Deloitte LLP, and U.S. retail, wholesale and distribution and consumer products leader. “This season e-commerce sales should continue to be strong as consumers search for the best deals online to maximize their wallets. Retailers who remain flexible to shifting consumer demand and behaviors will likely be poised for growth this holiday season.

Deloitte is forecasting a 3.5% to 4.6% increase in 2023 holiday sales compared with the same period in 2022. Retail sales between November 2022 and January 2023 (seasonally adjusted and excluding automotive and gasoline) grew 7.6% and totaled $1.49 trillion according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Deloitte is forecasting a 10.3% to 12.8% increase in 2023 holiday e-commerce sales compared with the same period in 2022. E-commerce sales between November 2022 and January 2023 (seasonally adjusted and excluding gasoline stations, motor vehicles and parts dealers, and food services) grew 7.9% totaling $252 billion.