According to CNN Business and Mastercard SpendingPulse, year-over-year U.S. holiday spending grew at its fastest rate in six years. From November through Christmas Eve, Americans spent just more than $850 million, a 5.1% increase from the 2017 holidays. E-commerce sales also surged, with 19.1% more sales than in 2017. In fact, within the last year, mobile e-commerce holiday sales grew 57% from 2017 and in-store pickup sales grew 47%.
In detail, apparel sales and home improvement had strong holiday seasons growing 7.9% and 9.0% year-over-year, respectively. Home furnishings grew moderately at 2.3%, and electronics and appliance sales fell 0.7%. Most noteworthy is that department stores continued to struggle against Internet retailers. Department store holiday sales fell 1.3% from 2017, which follows two years of declines greater than 2% that come from store closures.