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Holiday shoppers in Michigan are spending more than expected

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio

This holiday shopping season may turn out to be better than expected for Michigan retailers.

With temperatures approaching the 60’s, it may not feel like Christmas, but that’s apparently not stopping holiday shoppers.

Tom Scott, with the Michigan Retailers Association, says preliminary credit card data suggests holiday spending is up about 5% or more over last year, which is much higher than Michigan retailers were expecting.

Scott credits the weather, which has been much better than in recent years.

“Especially two years ago when we lost the last few days because of all the ice storms, power outages and all that,” says Scott, “Compared to that this is absolutely great.”

In addition to the warmer than normal weather, Michigan’s economy is also benefiting from the lowest unemployment rate in years and lower gasoline prices. 

Scott says he would like to see a little snow before the end of the year.  He says that may help the sale of winter clothes, which have been lagging this month. 

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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