State of the consumer sets the stage for 2020 State of the Union

"The state of the U.S. economy is strong, and the U.S. consumer is the principle reason."

NRF SVP for Government Relations David French

WASHINGTON, February 4, 2020 - The National Retail Federation today issued the following statement from Senior Vice President for Government Relations David French in advance of President Trump’s 2020 State of the Union address:

“The state of the U.S. economy is strong, and the U.S. consumer is the principle reason. Over the past year, consumer confidence has remained high despite the uncertainties of the trade war, the challenge of modernizing trade with Mexico and Canada, and a range of threats from global politics. Today, American consumers remain confident in the face of new uncertainties like coronavirus as well as the approaching 2020 elections.

“Despite these political and economic uncertainties, consumer spending has increased at a faster rate than GDP for five out of the last seven quarters. Holiday retail sales saw strong growth over 2018 and put the economy in a solid position for steady growth in 2020. Our Super Bowl spending survey showed the highest spending numbers on record, and the same is expected for Valentine's Day.

“While consumers remain in a good place, uncertainty around the ongoing trade war may cause consumers and businesses to be more cautious about spending. The trade war has killed 340,000 jobs and is costing American households up to $1,000 per year. The Phase One trade deal is a step in the right direction, but the administration must continue negotiating with China and reach a final deal that eliminates all tariffs. In this consumer-driven economy, let’s not jeopardize the health of the consumer and the economy with self-inflicted wounds. Consumers are the key to our nation’s economy. Let’s not stand in their way.”

About NRF
The National Retail Federation, the world’s largest retail trade association, passionately advocates for the people, brands, policies and ideas that help retail thrive. From its headquarters in Washington, D.C., NRF empowers the industry that powers the economy. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP and supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. For over a century, NRF has been a voice for every retailer and every retail job, educating, inspiring and communicating the powerful impact retail has on local communities and global economies.