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Initial holiday results: Women’s apparel, jewelry and dining strong; electronics weak


New York - Retail sales in the United States increased 5.5% from the day after Thanksgiving through Christmas Eve, fueled by demand for women's apparel, jewelry and dining out, according to MasterCard Advisors. Spending Pulse holiday report. Consumer electronics, which many industry analysts had predicted would be among the strongest categories this holiday season, was actually among the weakest, according to the report, with sales "basically flat" from Black Friday to Dec. 24 and in negative territory starting on Nov. 1.

The report tracks spending by combining sales activity in MasterCard's payments network with estimates of cash and other payment forms.

"This holiday season was a social one," said Sarah Quinlan, senior VP at MasterCard Advisors. "While certain retail categories saw steady performance from prior months, the focus on creating experiences stayed at the top of many lists. From dining out to planning trips to memorable pieces of jewelry, we saw increases in those categories that will drive future stories beyond just a package exchanged with a friend or family member.”

Additional perspective and insights will be available in the full December MasterCard SpendingPulse report in early January.
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