NRF Forecasts Retail Growth for 2014
WASHINGTON - The National Retail Federation (NRF) is expecting retail sales (excluding automobiles, gas stations, and restaurants) to grow by 4.1 percent in 2014. This projection is an increase from the 3.7 percent growth in 2013.
The NRF also reported that online sales are expected to grow between 9 and 12 percent in 2014. This uptick in retail sales will also have an impact on the overall economy in 2014. The GDP could fall between 2.6 and 3 percent, which is an improvement from the estimated 1.9 percent in 2013.
In the job market, retail is also helping to put 185,000 people to work per month, according to the NRF, which could help decrease unemployment by nearly 6.5 percent or more by the end of 2014.
Inflation, measured by the CPI, is also predicted to move higher to 1.7 percent in 2014 and the housing market is projected to continue to grow in 2014, which will influence more consumer spending.
"Measured improvements in economic growth combined with positive expectations for continued consumer spending will put the retail industry in a relatively good place in 2014," said Matthew Shay, president and CEO, NRF. "Though headwinds in the form of the looming debt ceiling debates, increased health care costs, and regulatory concerns still pose risks for both consumers and retailers, we are cautiously optimistic and hopeful that the economic tides will change in 2014.
Shay adds, "As the industry tackles important issues in 2014, such as immigration and tax reform, we will continue to push our nation's leaders to support policies that promote growth and create jobs for hard-working Americans."