Consumer Reports Sees Sales Pullback

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Yonkers, N.Y. - Despite a burst of holiday spending in November, retail sales may likely wane over the remaining days before Christmas, a Consumer Reports survey suggests.

 According to the consumer advocacy organization, increased stress, slipping confidence and a growing reluctance to spend could put a crimp in December sales.

Planned December purchases are down slightly following gains in November, the survey showed, led down by fewer planned purchases of personal electronics year over year.

By comparison, planned purchases of home electronics were up nearly 12 percent in November year over year, and planned purchases of major appliances were up 19 percent.

 "Despite all the talk and media attention about positive economic growth, consumers are telling us that they are not seeing or, more importantly, not feeling the difference," said Ed Farrell, a director of the Consumer Reports National Research Center. "The consumer may not be confident enough to continue spending through the holiday season. It may require deep discounting from retailers to get consumers back to the store in the final weeks of December."

The survey showed that consumers face increased financial difficulties in December, such as missed mortgage payments, job loss or loss of health-care coverage, following five straight months of improvement.


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