Driving in to work this morning, the radio stations were abuzz with holiday gloom and doom. Everyone claimed that holiday spending was off, stores were empty, and projections were going to be bleak, gloomy, doomy, depressing and that the holiday season was going to be terrible for retailers.
But don’t believe that hype. Holiday Shopping is off to a wonderful start.
Here are historical trends and the National Retail Federation’s projection for 2008.
- 2000 +2.5% $352b
- 2001 +3.6% $367b
- 2002 +1.3% $369b
- 2003 +5.2% $388b
- 2004 +6.7% $414b
- 2005 +6.1% $435b
- 2006 +4.6% $457b
- 2007 +2.4% $460b
- Projected 2008 +2.2% $470b
source: National Retail Federation
So the estimate is a gloomy $470b in sales. 78m americans shopped on Black Friday, and 85m are expected to shop on CyberMonday.
To me, it is very difficult to reconcile those facts and projections with the persisting media projections of universal negativity. It cannot be both ways.