Finally, It's Beginning to Look a Lot like Christmas – Holiday Spending Kicked Into Gear the Week Before Thanksgiving

NPD Holiday Shopping Bag 2016 Weekly Report

The week before Thanksgiving proved to be an important one for retail this holiday season. According to The NPD Group’s weekly point-of-sale results for key general merchandise categories, following a lackluster couple of weeks, sales in the third week of the holiday season lined up with dollar sales during same week in 2015.

Week Ending November 19, 2016*

  • Dollar sales in the third week of November 2016 were in line with the third week of November 2015.
  • The week’s boost was driven by an 8 percent increase in sales of Toys, compared to the same week last year.
  • Prestige Fragrance also saw a nice uptick during the third week of the holiday season, up 12 percent compared to last year.
  • Apparel sales followed the overall trend, matching week 3 2015 dollar sales.
  • Technology dollar declines seen in previous weeks softened significantly.

Top Performing Categories

  • PCs
  • Women’s Apparel
  • Sport Leisure Shoes (Classics)
  • Kids Outdoor & Sports Toys
  • Games/Puzzles

“Finally, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Some key categories kicked into gear with promotions that drove a lot of sales, and the traditional Christmas categories started to make their move in the third week of November,” said NPD’s Chief Industry Analyst, Marshal Cohen. “Newer categories of importance to the holiday season, like TVs (big ones), casual athletic shoes, outdoor toys, and games, combined with the predominance of online deals, will prove to be catalysts behind the momentum that energizes Thanksgiving week, as well as the lull that follows Black Friday weekend.”

Coming Next Week: Holiday Shopping Bag Results for Thanksgiving/Black Friday Week – see how this important week shaped up!

* Information is collected from a panel of leading retailers that provide weekly point-of-sale data covering in-store and online sales of Apparel, Toys, Technology, Athletic Footwear, and Prestige Fragrances.

Note: Shifts may occur from week to week in reporting results, due to retailer reporting updates.

For more information, or to speak with Marshal Cohen, please contact Janine Marshall, 516-625-2356 or, and visit NPD’s Holiday Insights page.

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