Holiday sales increase 8.5% despite omicron and supply chain issues

Woman in a red holiday sweater using a credit card and laptop to make an online purchase

Holiday sales have skyrocketed this year despite a series of setbacks affecting the retail world, according to the Associated Press.

Sales over the holiday season this year grew at the fastest rate in 17 years and are up 8.5 percent from last year. Additionally, holiday sales were up 10.7% from the 2019 holiday season, Mastercard Spending Pulse found. The spending measure, which tracked consumer spending from November 1 to December 24, found clothing and jewelry to have seen the biggest increases.

Clothing sales climbed 47%, followed by jewelry, which grew 32% from the previous year.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, online sales during the holiday season have increased by 61%, the

Notes AP.

The record sales are notable as several factors, including product shortages and the COVID-19 omicron variant, threatened retail success.

“I feel really good about the way the season has gone,” Steve Sadove, senior advisor at Mastercard and former CEO of Saks Inc., told the AP.

He added, “When people get a little uncomfortable, you’ll see a slight upturn in the line and a slight slowdown in in-store performance.”

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