Already eyeing hot toys, fashions and exclusive products, more consumers in the United States are beginning to make a dent in their holiday shopping lists, the National Retail Federation (NRF) said on Tuesday.
About 52.8 percent of Americans have already started their holiday shopping, up from 51.4 percent in the same period last year, according to NRF's holiday consumer spending survey conducted during November 1-6 on 9,383 consumers.
With plans to spend slightly more than last year, consumers usually will stock up on plenty of discretionary gifts, with clothing and clothing accessories being the most popular choice this year. Nearly 59.7 percent of consumers will buy fashion and apparel items and other accessories, while about 31.7 percent of shoppers will spend on electronic products, said the survey.
The survey also found consumers much prefer to use money they already have or have saved up to purchase holiday gifts. More than four in 10 will rely on debit cards as their primary method of payment. An additional 25.2 percent will use cash and 2.8 percent will use a check.
"In order to win over savvy shoppers this year, retailers are well aware that their deals have to stand out, and it looks like there's plenty of people eager to get their hands on the exclusive promotions we are already seeing," said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay.
U.S. holiday sales this year would increase to $586.1 billion, up 4.1 percent from the previous year, according to the forecast by NRF last month. The estimated growth was higher than the 10-year average holiday sales increase of 3.5 percent.
Supported by boosted consumer confidence, U.S. retailing giants, including Macy's and Target, have reported strong third-quarter sales, indicating they are well prepared to seize massive opportunities from the upcoming holiday season from November to December. This period is traditionally the hottest shopping season in America.
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