Retail spending in US stores fell 3% in February, but economists expect consumer spending to rise following the arrival of Biden’s stimulus checks.
The pullback in retail spending for February comes after a 7.6% increase in spending in January, following the second American pandemic stimulus package.
Sales on cars, furniture, electronics, and other consumer goods were down, while sales at gas stations rose by 3.6%. This is in part due to the rising gas prices which have been brought on by production cut backs and natural disasters in the southwest US states.
Despite the retail pullback, economists predict that Biden’s stimulus along with warmer weather and easing pandemic restrictions will result in higher spending across nearly all sectors. Increasing prevalence of COVID-19 vaccinations are likely to aid here as well, allowing more people to safely re-enter the workforce.
American’s will begin receiving their $1,400 stimulus checks in the next week or two, with some citizens already seeing a pending transaction in their accounts. The bill is also set to include further unemployment benefits and an expansion of child tax credits.
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