Bargain-hunting Americans are expected to shop in record numbers for the US holiday season, but they are tired of high prices. Retailers are cautious because spending for the entire holiday season is only set to keep pace with inflation. Consumers are less likely to spend because everything seems more expensive than before the pandemic. Retailers are offering steeper discounts to draw consumers into stores, but sales are still expected to grow only 3.3%. Consumers are looking for cheaper alternatives or forgoing purchases altogether, while retailers are offering much steeper discounts in some categories. Walmart even said it “may be managing through a period of deflation” in the coming months. Buy now, pay later use online is up 14.5% compared with last year, and some retailers are offering cheaper private label brands. Some consumers are cutting back on holiday spending due to higher food costs and lost jobs. The mood is price-sensitive, with many shoppers looking for discounts and better deals.
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