Nielsen Projects Flat Holiday Sales This Year

       

       

NEW YORK–U.S. retail sales during the coming holiday season should total $89 billion, about the same as it did last year, according to a prediction by The Nielsen Co.

James Russo, Nielsen’s vice president of global consumer insights, said holiday sales would probably change very little from 2009 in spite of the fact that more consumers surveyed by the research firm for its holiday-spending report intend to buy during the 2010 season. “Consumers are concerned about the jobless recovery and managing their personal finances,” Russo said in a Nielsen statement. “As a result, they are closely planning their spending and continue to reduce their shopping trips while placing more emphasis on value.”

Russo also predicted that online retailers will experience the biggest shopping surge. Meanwhile, consumers plan to spend less at mass merchants, and about the same amount as last year in supercenters, warehouse clubs, grocery stores, toy stores, book stores and office-supply stores.