So far, consumers haven’t read the recession memo. They are spending freely, according to MasterCard SpendingPulse, which found that retail sales grew by double digits, both online and offline, in September 2022. Excluding autos, off-line retail sales increased 11% y/y, and e-commerce sales rose 10.7% y/y. (The data are based on in-store and online retail sales across all forms of payment and are not adjusted for inflation.)
Not surprisingly, MasterCard’s data show relative weakness in housing-related retail sales. Furniture & furnishings and hardware retailers had small gains of 1.4% and 1.7%, respectively.