U.S. retailersÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ 2010 holiday sales jumped 5.5 percent for the best performance in five years as shoppers snapped up clothing and jewelry at MacyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Inc., Tiffany & Co. and other stores.
Retail sales, excluding autos, rose to $584 billion from Nov. 5 through Dec. 24, said MasterCard AdvisorsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ SpendingPulse, which measures retail sales by all payment forms. That compared with a 4.1 percent gain a year earlier. The numbers include sales made over the Web.
Consumers bought coats at chains such as BloomingdaleÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s as their confidence improved alongside the U.S. job market. Their spending, which accounts for about 70 percent of the American economy, is a positive sign heading into next year, Michael McNamara, a vice president at Purchase, New York-based SpendingPulse, said yesterday.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Increasing confidence has freed up more money from savings,Ã¢â‚¬Â McNamara said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We pretty much put a bow on what has been a positive season across a number of retail areas. We are seeing this momentum building and being sustained.Ã¢â‚¬Â
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