New York City -- A retail industry expert presented research Monday at the National Retail Federation convention in New York City that showed shoppers will continue to spend more this year, spurred by a slowly improving job market and an uptick in income.
However, Ira Kalish, director of global economics for Deloitte, added that enough shoppers are still struggling with their finances that any increase will be modest.
According to Kalish, "For those consumers that have jobs and are not underwater with their mortgages, there could be a slight uptick in spending."
Target and other discounters as well as dollar stores will continue to win shoppers so long as unemployment remains high, while the home-improvement sector will struggle until the housing market rebounds, he said.
U.S. retailers' profits margins rose by one percentage point to 3.4% in the 2009 fiscal year, according to a Deloitte study released on Sunday.