MasterCard: Retail sales up in most sectors in November

Purchase, N.Y. -- Sales growth was strong across most retail sectors in November, with early promotional activities and additional hours giving Black Friday sales, which traditionally account for 6%-7% of November’s total sales, a boost, according to MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse, a macroeconomic report tracking national retail sales.

Among the sectors that saw an increased growth rate during November was luxury, which saw its third consecutive month of strong year-over-year growth and its second in the double digits.

Electronics posted its highest growth rate of the year, and even furniture was up, after nine consecutive months of declines. 

“Sales momentum started picking up well before Thanksgiving, thanks to aggressive pre-Black Friday promotions,” said Michael McNamara, VP research and analysis for MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse. “Then the longer hours and the perfect weather combined to make for a strong Black Friday.  Considering that Black Friday can account for 15% of electronics sales and 10% of apparel sales for the month that can be a big driver of growth. The relatively easy comparisons we have with November 2010 have also helped.”

Apparel and jewelry also showed positive year-over-year returns, though without the increase in growth seen in some other sectors. 

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