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Holiday 2014

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Holiday 2015

NRF's Holiday Sales Forecast

NRF expects sales in November and December (excluding autos, gas and restaurants) to increase a solid 3.7 percent to $630.7 billion — significantly higher than the 10-year average of 2.5 percent. Online sales are forecast to increase between 6 and 8 percent to as much as $105 billion. Retailers are expected to hire between 700,000 and 750,000 seasonal workers this holiday season, in line with last year’s 714,000 holiday positions. View forecast details.

2015 Holiday Planning Playbook

Retail Holiday Planning Playbook

The holiday shopping season is the Super Bowl of retail and NRF is taking on the role of coach with the inaugural Retail Holiday Planning Playbook, which asks retail IT, marketing, loss prevention, digital and supply chain executives that they will do differently for Holiday 2015. The resulting retailers’ guide answers key questions about the upcoming holiday season. Download the playbook.

How Alex and Ani prepares for the holiday season

Multichannel retail is always challenging, but becomes more of a balancing act during the holiday season. Alex and Ani Chief Marketing Officer and Senior VP of Digital Ryan Bonifacino explains how the company’s internal teams are working together to plan for Holiday 2015. Watch the video.

Holiday 2014

The 2014 holiday season was one for the history books: Disney’s “Frozen” took the top spot on the girls’ Top Toys List for the first time in the survey’s 11-year history, holiday shoppers opted for early promotions even before the Thanksgiving weekend kicked off — shifting how much people spent over the biggest shopping weekend of the year — and for the first time in 12 years, consumer spent more than $800 on average on holiday gifts, food, decorations and more.

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Historical Highlights


A shortened holiday calendar, an early Thanksgiving and an October government shutdown puts the 2013 holiday season in the books as one of the most interesting in history. For the first time in 17 years, holiday shoppers watched as Washington shut its doors for two weeks in October. During his annual holiday forecast media call, NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay told listeners that the 3.9 percent forecast “was a very realistic look at where we are in the current economy.”

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The economic picture going into the holiday season was much like it was the year prior – uncertain. Government data showed a crosscurrent of indicators that hung in the balance of Washington’s decision to avoid a “fiscal cliff.” NRF’s first holiday spending survey found that consumers would spend close to what they’d spent the previous year, an average of $740 on gifts, decorations, flowers, food and more.

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In December, NRF announced it was revising its holiday forecast upwards to 3.8 percent from the original forecast of 2.8 percent. Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz commented, “Consumer spending this holiday season has surpassed expectations, though many shoppers continue to stick to their budgets and buy only what they need. Despite modest job and income growth, consumers have continuously proven they have the capacity to spend.” Holiday sales in 2011 ended up increasing even more than expected at 4.8 percent.

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