Holiday Shopping Slumps in Week Six

Beauty, small home appliances and other categories all saw growth in the week following Cyber Week.

NORTH AMERICA–Following Cyber Week, dollar sales for the first full week of December were 7 percent lower compared to the same week in 2016, according to The NPD Group’s weekly point-of-sale results for key general merchandise categories tracked during the holidays.

Despite the decline, The NPD Group reports that U.S. retail sales for the first six weeks of the 2017 holiday shopping season are even with last year across key categories.

Beauty and small home appliances were the top performing categories during the week, with dollar gains just shy of 10 percent. Other top performing categories include home automation (driven by security and monitoring, power and sensors), stereo headphones, video cards, home environment appliances (driven by specialty cleaning) and facial skincare.

“The season has been a mess of inconsistencies, from seemingly universal apparel promotions and novelties like ‘ugly’ sweaters, faux fur and hats with earflaps emerging as the season’s standouts, to an implied focus on self-gifting with makeup, skincare, and innovative products for the home leading Holiday 2017,” says Marshal Cohen, chief industry advisor, NPD. “The season’s crunch-time will likely bring some lift in sales, especially as consumers take advantage of the extra full weekend of shopping before Christmas for last-minute gifts.”

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