NRF Increases 2021 Retail Sales Forecast

U.S. retail sales are expected to exceed $4.44 trillion in 2021, says the National Retail Federation (NRF) in its revised annual forecast for 2021. It anticipates that retail sales will now grow between 10.5 per cent and 13.5 per cent this year as the economy accelerates its pace of recovery. “The economy and consumer spending have proven to be much more resilient than initially forecasted,” says Matthew Shay, NRF president and CEO. “The combination of vaccine distribution, fiscal stimulus, and private sector ingenuity have put millions of Americans back to work. While there are downside risks related to worker shortages, an overheating economy, tax increases, and over-regulation, overall households are healthier and consumers are demonstrating their ability and willingness to spend. The pandemic was a reminder how essential small, mid-size, and large retailers are to the everyday lives of Americans in communities nationwide.” The revised forecast surpasses NRF’s initial projection of at least 6.5 per cent growth, made in February. It now forecasts that 2021 retail sales are estimated to total between $4.44 trillion to $4.56 trillion. Non-store and online sales, which are included in the total figure, are expected to grow between 18 per cent and 23 per cent to a range of $1.09 trillion to $1.13 trillion as consumers continue to utilize eCommerce.