April 23, 2024 3:28 pm
NRF reports economy is “solid” despite slowing growth rate

The National Retail Federation (NRF) predicts that despite slower growth in GDP and retail sales, the economy is expected to continue performing well for the remainder of the year. Jack Kleinhenz, NRF’s Chief Economist, expressed confidence in the economy’s foundation and stated that consumer spending is a key factor in the ongoing recovery.

According to the NRF’s April Monthly Economic Review, retail sales are projected to grow between 2.5% and 3.5% in 2024, marking a slight decrease from the rapid growth seen during the pandemic but aligning with pre-pandemic averages. Overall economic growth is expected to be modest, but consumer spending should remain strong due to slowing inflation and positive job growth.

GDP, adjusted for inflation, is forecasted to grow around 2.3% year over year in 2024, slightly slower than the previous year but still considered robust enough to sustain job growth and consumer spending. Consumer spending is expected to increase by about 2%, a slight decrease from the previous year’s rate of 2.3%.

The NRF noted that inflation has decreased significantly due to various factors such as moderating wage growth, supply chain improvements, and higher interest rates. Despite a slight uptick in prices at the beginning of 2024, Kleinhenz anticipates inflation easing down to 2.2% year over year by the end of the year. As a result, interest rates are expected to decrease with rate cuts predicted by the Federal Reserve in June, September, and December of this year.

Overall, while there may be some slowdown in economic growth this year compared to last year’s exceptional rate, consumer spending should remain strong due to slowing inflation and positive job growth prospects.

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