clearn.png
Tuesday January 18th, 2022 5:38AM

December retail sales slide 1.9% amid shortages, omicron

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — Americans, beset by product shortages, rising prices and the arrival of omicron, sharply cut their spending in December after a burst of early spending in the fall that helped bolster the holiday season.

Retail sales fell a seasonally adjusted 1.9% in December compared with the previous month when sales increased 0.3%, the U.S. Commerce Department said Friday.

Sales at department stores fell 7%. restaurant sales slipped 0.8% and online sales fell 8.7%.

Omicron was identified by the World Health Organization in late November, and the December report from the Commerce Department is the first to capture some of its effect on consumer behavior.

The monthly retail report covers only about a third of overall consumer spending and doesn’t include money spent on things like haircuts, hotel stays or plane tickets, all which tend to see business tail off when anxiety about COVID-19 tick higher.

The National Retail Federation, the nation's largest retail trade group, is crunching last month's sales figures and is expected to release the actual holiday sales results later Friday. It's expecting a record breaking growth of anywhere from 8.5% and 10.5% compared to the year-earlier period despite the challenges facing shoppers and stores.

The omicron variant has led to widespread worker shortages with so people calling out sick, including the retail sector, and supply shortages have curtailed what they can sell. Stores and restaurants have slashed operating hours or remained closed on days they had previously been open.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Business, AP Business - Consumer News, AP Business - Economy
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
December retail sales slide 1.9% amid shortages, omicron
Americans, beset by product shortages, rising prices and the arrival of omicron, sharply cut their spending in December after a burst of spending in the fall that helped bolster the holiday season
8:43AM ( 8 minutes ago )
Russia demands US, NATO response next week on Ukraine
Russia has strongly repeated its demand that NATO doesn't expand eastward despite the rejection of that by the military alliance amid a Russian troop buildup near Ukraine
8:38AM ( 14 minutes ago )
Mask rules get tighter in Europe in winter's COVID-19 wave
Italy, Spain and other European countries are reinstating or stiffening mask mandates as their hospitals struggle with mounting numbers of COVID-19 patients
8:15AM ( 36 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Wells tops Wall Street estimates with $5.8B in 4Q profit
Wells Fargo easily beat Wall Street targets in the fourth quarter, just as interest rates appear poised to take off and further boost the nation’s largest mortgage lender
7:39AM ( 1 hour ago )
Cyberattack in Ukraine targets government websites
Ukrainian officials say a huge cyberattack has left a number of government websites temporarily unavailable
7:15AM ( 1 hour ago )
Hong Kong bans transit flights from over 150 countries
Hong Kong International Airport is banning transit passengers from 150 countries and territories starting Sunday, tightening stringent travel controls in an effort to stem the spread of the highly contagious omicron variant
6:47AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Business
Bank of America slashes fees for account overdrafts
Bank of America is slashing the amount it charges customers when they spend more than they have in their accounts and plans to eliminate entirely its fees for bounced checks
6:52PM ( 2 days ago )
EXPLAINER: Why was holiday-season flying such a nightmare?
A forecast of better weather means that the worst may finally be over for tens of thousands of air travelers who were grounded by flight cancellations that skyrocketed over the New Year’s Day weekend
2:14PM ( 1 week ago )
AP Business - Consumer News
Biden chooses 3 for Fed board, including first Black woman
President Joe Biden will nominate three people for the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors, including Sarah Bloom Raskin, a former Fed and Treasury official, for the top regulatory slot and Lisa Cook, who would be the first Black woman to serve on the Fed’s board
12:05AM ( 8 hours ago )
Asian shares skid, tracking Wall Street retreat
Asian shares are lower after a retreat on Wall Street that left the Nasdaq composite down 2.5%
12:02AM ( 8 hours ago )
Wisconsin Gov. Evers' reelection pitch: democracy is at risk
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is known for his folksy demeanor, sprinkling his speeches with “by gollys” and the occasional PG-rated swear word
11:51PM ( 9 hours ago )
AP Business - Economy
Russia demands US, NATO response next week on Ukraine
Russia has strongly repeated its demand that NATO doesn't expand eastward despite the rejection of that by the military alliance amid a Russian troop buildup near Ukraine
8:38AM ( 14 minutes ago )
Mask rules get tighter in Europe in winter's COVID-19 wave
Italy, Spain and other European countries are reinstating or stiffening mask mandates as their hospitals struggle with mounting numbers of COVID-19 patients
8:15AM ( 36 minutes ago )
In southern Dutch town, cafes open in lockdown protest
Shops, bars and restaurants in a southern Dutch town have opened in a protest action that underscored growing anger at weeks of coronavirus lockdown measures
8:09AM ( 43 minutes ago )
Djokovic ruling fits with Australia's tough immigration line
To people watching from afar, the treatment of tennis star Novak Djokovic by Australian immigration officials might have seemed harsh
8:01AM ( 50 minutes ago )
Elephants dying from eating plastic waste in Sri Lankan dump
Conservationists and veterinarians are warning that plastic waste in an open landfill in eastern Sri Lanka is killing elephants, after two more were found dead over the weekend
7:45AM ( 1 hour ago )