Retail sales are expected to grow between 4% and 6% in 2023 according to an industry forecast released today.
This expected growth compares to 7% in 2022. The 2023 forecast is above the pre-pandemic, average annual retail sales growth rate of 3.6%.
Non-store and online sales—included in the total figure—are expected to grow between 10% and 12% year over year to a range of $1.41 trillion to $1.43 trillion. As brick-and-mortar stores have evolved in recent years, they remain the primary point of purchase for consumers, accounting for approximately 70% of total retail sales.
Inflation is expected to continue downward, but will remain between 3% and 3.5% for all goods and services for the year.
Although the labor market has remained resilient, the trade organization anticipates job growth to decelerate in the coming months in lockstep with slower economic activity and the prospect of restrictive credit conditions. The unemployment rate is likely to exceed 4% before next year.
NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz acknowledges that recent developments in the financial markets and banking sector as well as some unresolved public policy issues complicate the outlook.