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Special Report

Retail Sales Research Brief

December 2021

Pace of Spending Eases;
Retail Real Estate in Good Shape Moving into 2022

Retail sales continue to float well-above pre-pandemic levels. Consumers acted on holiday shopping plans earlier than normal, resulting in a more moderate improvement in retail spending last month than is typical for this time of year. Core retail sales ticked up 0.2 percent in November, driving the year-over-year gain to an impressive 16.5 percent. Gains in core sales were most pronounced at food and beverage stores, sporting goods, building material retailers and restaurants and bars. In further evidence that consumers are getting out and about, spending at gas stations jumped 1.7 percent last month.

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