The outlook for national retail sales are surprisingly good this holiday season according to George Kelemen of Texas Retailers Association. Even though Covid job losses have taken a toll, Kelemen says working Americans are spending the money they saved while staying home. "The predictions for retail sales are at the minimum to be on par with last year's sales - which were record setting! If not --- slightly above. Kelemen says people who are working are saving money because they're not traveling, eating out or going to concerts...and are just a bit happier than they were just a couple of weeks ago. "The Holiday Season is uplifting! We've got some good news with not one but two vaccines rolling out. People are starting to brighten their outlook a little bit."
It might have even been higher if it hadn't been for the layoffs. "Texas will definitely mirror the national levels of sales. Houston area has had higher lay-offs and furloughs, and because of the down-turn in the oil sector, it may be a little lower around Houston. But - I haven't seen any signs of a drop off!" Kelemen points out the many mom and pop stores are doing well because they have embraced the online experience and have gained shoppers.