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Mall2 Photo: Mall of America

Thanksgiving shopping heralds a busy holiday freight season

Survey indicates “positive consumer sentiment” will help boost holiday spending.

The Thanksgiving Weekend Shopping Report recently issued by International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) indicates more than 145 million U.S. adults spent time at malls and shopping centers and spent on average $377.50 on gifts, food/dining and entertainment.

“Thanksgiving Weekend is a great indicator for what will be a holiday season full of spending, as we are seeing a very positive consumer sentiment and willingness to spend,” noted Tom McGee, ICSC’s president and CEO, in a statement.

“Shopping centers across the country should feel very optimistic about the season ahead,” he added. “While the shopping season is longer this year, it’s not coming at the expense of the most popular shopping day of the year.”

Some 63% of the 2,000-plus consumers polled made a purchase and visited an average of six stores, compared to four last year. Many holiday shoppers took advantage of so-called “omni-channel” options with 25% making a purchase online during Thanksgiving and/or Black Friday with plans to pick their orders up in-store.

With the holiday shopping season underway, consumers showed they are just getting started. When asked about their December expectations:

  • 60% anticipate similar deals/promotions.
  • 28% percent of consumers say they think the deals/promotions in December will be better than what was found over the past weekend.
  • Only 12% percent expect the deals/promotions won’t be as good.


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