The National Retail Federation (NRF) is saying that "with more businesses reopening and bringing employees back to work, the U.S. economy is on firm footing and could see its fastest growth in more than three decades."
While there is a great deal of uncertainty about how fast and far this economy will grow in 2021, surveys show an increase in individuals being vaccinated, more willingness to receive a vaccination, increased spending intentions and comfort with resuming pre-pandemic behaviors like shopping, travel and family gatherings,” says NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz. "This feel-better situation will likely translate into higher levels of household spending, especially around upcoming holidays like the Fourth of July and spending associated with back-to-work and back-to-school.
"The consumer is nearly always the key driver in the economy, and with the consumer in good financial health, a sharp demand is expected to unfold over the coming months."
The NRF notes that "the $2.4 trillion saved by households during February alone was approximately twice the average monthly savings during pre-pandemic 2019 and comes on top of savings accumulated over the past year as consumers stayed home rather than dining out, traveling or attending sports and entertainment events. In addition, use of consumer credit is up, with outstanding credit surging in February to its highest level since late 2017." All of which suggests a consumer base with growing confidence, discretionary income, and a desire to spend money.