NRF Projects 4.1% Retail Sales Growth in 2014
On the heels of improved economic growth and continued consumer spending, the National Retail Federation (NRF) projects retail industry sales to increase 4.1 percent this year -- up from 3.7 growth in 2013. Online sales are also expected to grow between 9 and 12 percent.
Among the factors that contribute to NRF’s brighter economic forecast include an approximate 2.6 to 3 percent increase in economic growth as measured by real GDP, up from 1.9 percent in 2013; and an overall improved labor market, with unemployment likely to fall to 6.5 percent or lower by the end of 2014.
Additionally, inflation is predicted to inch higher to as much as 1.7 percent in 2014, and the housing sector is expected to see continued improvement as well.
“Though headwinds in the form of the looming debt ceiling debates, increased health care costs, and regulatory concerns still pose risks for both consumers and retailers, we are cautiously optimistic and hopeful that the economic tides will change in 2014,” said NRF President/CEO Matthew Shay.
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries.