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NRF Says 2020 Holiday Sales Grew 8.3 Percent Despite Pandemic
Retail sales during 2020’s November-December holiday season grew an unexpectedly high 8.3 percent over the same period in 2019 to $789.4 billion, exceeding the National Retail Federation’s holiday forecast despite the economic challenges of the coronavirus pandemic, NRF said. The numbers include online and other non-stores sales, which were up 23.9 percent at $209 billion.
“Despite unprecedented challenges, consumers and retailers demonstrated incredible resilience this holiday season,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “Faced with rising transmission of the virus, state restrictions on retailers and...
NRF Welcomes Necessary Aid as Biden Unveils Stimulus Plan
The National Retail Federation issued the following statement from President and CEO Matthew Shay in response to the release of President-elect Biden’s plan to combat the coronavirus and stimulate the nation’s economic recovery.
“The stimulus plan released by President-elect Biden is expansive in scope, but it serves as an encouraging signal that the new administration intends swift action to support businesses and...
2020 Retail Imports May Break Record Despite Pandemic
Imports seen during 2020 appear to be headed toward a new record despite the coronavirus pandemic, and remain at high levels as 2021 begins, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.
“Nobody would have thought last spring that 2020 would be a record year for imports, but it was clearly an unpredictable year,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said. “Consumers and retailers once again proved their resilience in the face of unprecedented challenges. Thanks in part to government stimulus, retail sales saw...
NRF Chief Economist says Latest Stimulus will Help Continue Recovery from Pandemic
Economic challenges brought on by the coronavirus pandemic will continue in 2021, but stimulus legislation signed into law just after Christmas will help maintain and accelerate the nation’s ongoing recovery, National Retail Federation Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said.
“As we closed out 2020, it was an end to a whirlwind year whose challenging economic environment will almost certainly continue in 2021,” Kleinhenz said. “The coming year might be just as eventful as the economic recovery faces many uncertainties...
Poultry Quarterly Q1 2021: A Perfect Storm in 1H, Initial Recovery in 2H 2021
After the big disruption caused by Covid-19 in 2020, the poultry industry will face additional challenges in 2021, especially in 1H. Covid-19 will place ongoing pressure on foodservice and trade, and the consequent slow economic growth will lead to more price-driven market conditions. As market fundamentals appear challenging for 2021, the poultry industry should prepare for a tough year.
“Looking forward, we see four main challenges for the global poultry industry: ongoing Covid-19 impacts on markets, high and volatile feed prices, China’s African swine fever recovery, and...
NAMI’s Challenge of California’s Prop 12 Receives Key Support
The North American Meat Institute’s (Meat Institute) lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 12 (Prop 12) received key support from the federal government and 20 states with the filing of two amicus briefs.
The U.S. Department of Justice filed an amicus brief in support of the Meat Institute’s petition for rehearing en banc in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
In addition, the States of...
Plant-Based Dairy and Egg Product Sales Reach $4 Billion in 2020
Market research firm Packaged Facts projects retail sales of plant-based dairy and egg products will rise at an average annual rate of 6.0%, reaching $5.2 billion by 2024. This is up from $4.3 billion in estimated sales in 2020, which itself is up from $3.9 billion in sales during 2019.
These findings were published in the brand new Packaged Facts report Dairy & Egg Alternatives: Outlook for Plant-Based & Cell-Cultured Consumer Products.
Despite potential industry disruptors such as the lingering economic impact of...
Restaurant Industry in Free Fall; 10,000 Close in Three Months
The National Restaurant Association sent a letter to Congressional leadership, sharing new survey findings that illustrate continued business deterioration across the restaurant industry and offering support for the moderate compromise proposal as a 'down payment' toward a larger relief package in early 2021.
"What these findings make clear is that more than 500,000 restaurants of every business type—franchise, chain, and independent—are in an economic
U.S. Poultry Industry Provides 2.1 Million Jobs; Economic Impact Up 15 Percent in Two Years
The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY), National Chicken Council, National Turkey Federation and United Egg Producers have released an updated economic impact study that highlights the positive impact the poultry industry has on jobs, wages, and federal and state revenue in the United States.
A dynamic and integral part of the national economy, the U.S. poultry industry provides 2,139,617 jobs, $121.1 billion in wages, $576.6 billion in economic activity and...
NRF Chief Economist Says Pandemic Made this Year's Holiday Forecast the Most Challenging Ever
With the coronavirus pandemic presenting unique circumstances for the nation’s economy, forecasting retail holiday sales this year was more challenging than ever before, National Retail Federation Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said today.
“There is no doubt this is the most unusual economic environment in our lifetimes,” Kleinhenz said. “I cannot think of a period with so many simultaneous factors hitting the economy at once when formulating this forecast.”
NRF usually releases its annual holiday forecast in early October but...
NRF Encouraged by Bipartisan Stimulus Package Conversations
The National Retail Federation issued the following statement from President and CEO Matthew Shay in response to the announcement of a $900 billion bipartisan coronavirus stimulus package. “NRF and our members have been vocal and consistent in our calls for additional, targeted fiscal stimulus and the extension of expiring coronavirus relief measures. We are encouraged by...
PODCAST: Investing In the Future: John Manzella on American Capitalism
This week on Market Digest Laura speaks with John Manzella, nationally syndicated columnist on global business, trade policy, labor, and the latest economic trends. In this episode we discuss expected affects of the U.S. election results, the trade war with China, investing in young farmers, and...
U.S. Shoppers Shift Shopping Strategies to Brace for Recessionary Effects
A much more discerning grocery shopper is emerging in the wake of initial widespread panic-buying sparked by COVID-19 this past spring that led consumers to disregard prices and stock up on products and ingredients required to prepare the entirety of their family meals at home. Retailers and their trading partners responded as rapidly as possible to the sudden spikes in demand by pulling back on promotional efforts and focusing on their supply chains to keep up, which led to higher prices on 64% of more than 500 grocery store categories.
The short-term result? FMCG sales shot up $77.9 billion across all U.S. channels for the 52 weeks ended Sept. 12, 2020, translating to year-over-year growth of 9.3%. While this lift was astounding for the retail industry, it’s time for stakeholders to...
Rabobank's Poultry Quarterly Q4 2020: The Challenge of Balancing Volatile Markets
Moving through Q4 2020 and into 2021, the global poultry industry will operate in a volatile market context, with pressure coming from foodservice and wholesale markets. Possible new waves of Covid-19 will add to the market ups and downs, and the impact of a deep economic crisis will make markets more price-driven.
“Over the whole year, we expect a slight increase in global poultry production, mostly as a result of poultry expansion in China and Vietnam, where African swine fever has reduced pork availability, and also from expansion in the US. The rest of the world will be...
100,000 Restaurants Closed Six Months into Pandemic
Six months following the first shutdown of restaurants for the coronavirus pandemic, the restaurant industry is in limbo. According to a new survey released by the National Restaurant Association, nearly 1 in 6 restaurants (representing nearly 100,000 restaurants) is closed either permanently or long-term; nearly 3 million employees are still out of work; and the industry is on track to lose $240 billion in sales by the end of the year.
The survey, which asked restaurant operators about the six-month impact of the pandemic on their businesses, found that overwhelmingly, most restaurants are still struggling to survive and don't expect their position to improve over the next six months. The findings include...
Imports Spike as Economy Continues Recovery and Retailers Stock Up for Holidays
Imports surged to unexpected high levels this summer and may have hit a new record as the U.S. economy continues to reopen and retailers stock up for the holiday season, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.
“It’s important to be careful how much to read into these numbers after all we’ve seen this year, but retailers are importing far more merchandise for the holidays than we expected even a month ago,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said. “Some of these imports are helping replenish inventories that started to run low after...
NRF Chief Economist Says Coronavirus 'Continues As a Shock' for Small Businesses
Data indicating that small business owners are increasingly pessimistic about the coronavirus shows the need for continued economic stimulus measures, National Retail Federation Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said today.
“The coronavirus continues as a shock to America’s small employers,” Kleinhenz said. “Small businesses are the backbone of American ingenuity and impact local economies in cities and towns across the country, but responses to recent surveys highlight the fragility of many small business enterprises and the importance of the need for well-tailored economic policy.”
“Just as a physician checks a patient’s pulse to measure the rhythm and strength of the heartbeat, small business is...
NRF Chief Economist Says Pandemic Recession Could Already be Easing but 'No One Has a Crystal Ball'
The economic downturn brought on by the coronavirus pandemic has officially been declared a recession, but National Retail Federation Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said today the key question is how long it will last.
“Will this recession be briefer than earlier recessions?” Kleinhenz said. “No one has a crystal ball. And just as it can take months to be certain a recession has begun, it can take time to declare when one is over.”
“While it would be unusual for a recession to last less than six months, it is possible that the current one could have already ended with May’s rebound,” Kleinhenz said. “The good news is that the recession may have...
Uncertainty Surrounds the Reopening of Businesses
While the reopening of businesses shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic is a significant step forward, the rate at which the economy will recover or consumers will feel comfortable resuming activities such as dining out or shopping remains to be seen.
“Is it possible the worst of the coronavirus pandemic is behind us? Maybe, but we are not out of the woods yet, and uncertainty abounds,” said National Retail Federation Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz.
Kleinhenz added, “Predicting what will happen is even more challenging than usual. While history often helps guide us, previous downturns offer little guidance on what is likely to unfold over the next six to 12 months. There is no user’s manual in which government, businesses or consumers can find...
Mintel: The Current Economic Environment Compared to The Great Recession
Mintel has released new research analyzing the current economic environment compared to that of the Great Recession, including insight on the economic indicators that will play a role in predicting consumer spending in the months and years ahead.
While the economy is in decline today, the factors leading to the last recession, its duration, and lasting impact on consumers are (and will be) very different this time around.
Why this time it’s different
The Great Recession was largely impacted by failures in the housing and banking industries. Today, the crisis is out of human control, and one we can’t yet solve. What’s more, the financial system today is...
NRF Chief Economist: Recovery Likely to Come in 'Fits and Starts'
With some stores starting to reopen as governors lift stay-at-home orders across the country, economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic is likely to come gradually and may vary by location, National Retail Federation Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said.
“Getting back to work or shopping in a pre-virus manner is difficult to predict at this time, with households likely to tiptoe back in rather than making an immediate return to the lives they experienced before,” Kleinhenz said. “As states begin to slowly reopen and assuming the coronavirus does not come back, the economy should begin a process of gradual recovery. My overall impression is that the recovery will have fits and starts among states, regions and cities depending on...
Retail Industry Leaders Inform President Trump’s Advisory Group on Reopening the U.S. Economy
The National Retail Federation issued the following statement from President and CEO Matthew Shay in response to his participation with other retail industry and business leaders on a White House call for the initiation of the Great American Economic Revival Industry Groups.
“Retailers are on the front line and fully engaged in their communities in this war against coronavirus. The health of their associates, customers and communities is their number one priority.
We are grateful to President Trump, Vice President Pence and Secretary Mnuchin for bringing together some of the most successful business leaders in the world to gather their perspective on how...
NRF Chief Economist: Stopping the Pandemic is First Step to Restoring Sound Economy
In the April issue of the National Retail Federation’s Monthly Economic Review, NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz says the coronavirus pandemic “has triggered shocks” – but that the underlying economy is sound.
“How quickly the country gets a handle on containing the virus will determine the degree of the impact on the economy and how soon businesses can reopen,” Kleinhenz wrote in the report. “We expect a severe contraction, and if the nation doesn’t get the virus under control the fallout will be worse.”
Gross domestic product that was growing at a 2.1 percent annual rate at the end of 2019 is “about to go into a mandated nosedive,” according to the report. And retail sales data for March...
Technomic: Potential Economic Shock from Coronavirus Pandemic is Unprecedented
There is wide disagreement about whether COVID-19 will be an economic shock with a sharp recovery or if it will pull the economy into a sluggish recession. The previous worst quarter in U.S. history for GDP was Q2 2009, immediately after the economic crash. That quarter, the GDP dove by 3.9%, a fraction of the projections we are seeing as a result of COVID-19. The economic shock from this event is unprecedented.
Consumer spending on foodservice continues to drop. For the average consumer, Technomic research suggests that spending has declined by an estimated 45% from a typical week in February, with further planned reductions expected to come. Consumer demand is still present in the marketplace, but as the pandemic has heightened and concerns have grown, a new normal is setting in. Shelter-in-place and social distancing actions have resulted in...
From Animal Meat to Fungi, U.S. Consumers Tap into A Host of Sources to Get Protein into Their Diets
COVID-19 Disruptions Create New Areas of Opportunity and Risk for the Poultry Industry
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