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Chicago -- A report released Tuesday by ShopperTrak found that consumers are expected to shop and buy more in the week leading up to Mother's Day than they did last year.
According to the report, national retail sales, when compared to the same period last year, will rise 6% in the week leading up to Mother's Day, and foot traffic will increase 3.7%.
"As the economy improves, consumers are recovering the confidence they need to splurge on Mom this year," said ShopperTrak founder Bill Martin. "Retailers can expect a busy week leading up to Mother's Day."
ShopperTrak's 6% sales increase forecast follows 27 months of consecutive year-over-year U.S. GAFO retail sales growth. Mother's Day sales and traffic are historically a bright shopping spot in the retail calendar, lagging only behind the November - December holiday season, the back-to-school season and Easter.
Mother's Day 2012 falls one week later on the calendar than last year, which may affect sales positively, according to ShopperTrak. The extra time between Mother's Day and Easter gives consumers a chance to replenish their bank accounts after Easter shopping. The warmer weather may also entice more people to get out of the house and hit the stores.
Retailers saw decreases in year-over-year foot traffic during the final months of 2011, but are beginning to see signs of improvement. ShopperTrak reports year-over-year changes in foot traffic were flat during the first quarter of 2012, and slightly increased as the second quarter began. Barring excessive increases in gasoline prices and increased economic uncertainty, ShopperTrak expects foot traffic to continue rising through the back-to-school shopping season later this summer.
"Retailers can expect more shoppers in the weeks leading up to Mother's Day," added Martin. "Those who monitor foot traffic, and adjust their store management practices accordingly, will be the most successful this year."