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What Happened to the "Bush Economy" meme?

So how was the Holiday shopping Season?

Holiday spending up almost 9%*
Planned holiday spending up almost 20%*
Amazon Ships 108 Million Holiday Packages
Holiday spending has retailers seeing green
Friday was Walmart's biggest Day in History*

But then there is always Al-Reuters:

Americans to cut holiday spending, mall trips-poll
Those idiots.

And of Course CNN has it "Too Close To Call." Apparently they are waiting for returns from Florida

Photo finish in 2005 shopping race
And it keeps going...
Holiday shopping not over
Shopping rush continues
Holiday shopping: Round two
And the gift that keeps on giving is pushing sales higher:
Holiday shopping, Round 2: Gift cards multiply
So what is everyone buying?
MasterCard: Holiday Jewelry Spending Down 4.6%
iPods dominate Amazon.com's electronics section

Earrings or a iPod Video? No contest!

I blame George Bush for this economy!

* Gift Card sales do not count until they are redeemed. This was the biggest gift card year in history so the true number is higher.


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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference What Happened to the "Bush Economy" meme?:

» Keith D. Milby :: blog linked with Gift Card Shopping Kicks In

» BizzyBlog.com linked with Greater Than Expectations: End of Year Edition

» Conservative Outpost linked with Quick Links

» Myopic Zeal linked with Holiday Economic Headlines

» respublica linked with Dueling headlines

Comments (21)

Don't you think we're getti... (Below threshold)

Don't you think we're getting awfully close to not being able to 'measure' holiday spending by Dec. 26th anymore? Heck we bought my side of the family gift cards, it's what they asked for. So that (I'm throwing a figure out here) $150 we spent, whatever percentage of our total Christmas spending that is, doesn't even count. No, that's not true, the 5 kids books I got my nephew count, almost forgot those. Until January or beyond when those gift cards are redeemed it looks like we spend zilch for Christmas gifts. I think the hyperventilating reports, both pro and con, are going to have to give it a rest in the next year or two unless gift cards somehow go out of style (no, I don't see it happening, either).

And of Course CNN has it... (Below threshold)
langtry:

And of Course CNN has it "Too Close To Call." Apparently they are waiting for returns from Florida. Tee Hee!

Falze:

"Don't you think we're getting awfully close to not being able to 'measure' holiday spending by Dec. 26th anymore?"

Good point. In yesterday's newscast, the Chicago ABC affiliate interviewed a number of retail managers, asking them what kind of buying was being sone in the post-December 25th sales. To a person, they said they were seeing more Gift Card redemption than ever before, and that meant a likely continuation of the holiday spending spirit.

This year, I didn't get the... (Below threshold)

This year, I didn't get the presents I wanted.

I blame Cheney.

All things considered our f... (Below threshold)
Rodney Dill:

All things considered our family has had a pretty good year and Christmas. On top of not really cutting back on gifts, I've had to replace a garage door, (just wore out) and the beginning of December we bought a Schnorky puppy (half schnauzer, half Yorkie)

Driving is still pretty frantic around the malls so I thing the shopping frenzy is continuing.

I wish you a better year, Paul.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

--Rodney Dill

And, more cheer, the latest... (Below threshold)
-S-:

And, more cheer, the latest Rasmussen poll places Bush at a popularity rating of FIFTY PERCENT. THAT should make them happy and filled with the "holiday" spirit!

Sorry, "them" as in Democra... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Sorry, "them" as in Democrats, previous (^^).

We were noticing how many g... (Below threshold)

We were noticing how many great gift ideas were being advertised on and after Christmas, and it took us a while to figure out what was going on -- but the answer has to be the gift-card craze.

Still, I'm not so sure you can say that gift-card purchases "don't count." That's revenue to whichever vendor was selling the gift cards, after all. Redemption of the gift card is just closing out what amounts to an interest-free loan to that vendor.

As a retail worker, I would... (Below threshold)

As a retail worker, I would have to agree that this has been a strong Holiday season. As per the giftcards, when looking at sales, we tend to treat giftcards as unactualized income. The ammount for giftcards is subtracted from overall sales so that we have a truer picture of our day to day sales trends. The fact that they are redeemed at a later date creats a smoothing effect to the sales dropoff from the post-Holiday season. I'm not an accountant, but in looking at gift cards, the consensus is that it was a strong year through 12/24, and we will be seeing increases in our post-Holiday sales when people redeem their cards.

McGehee Card purchases are ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

McGehee Card purchases are a BIG TIME boon for the retailers.

Think of how many simply get lost or forgotten about and expire.

Forget the interest free loan. The real payout is when people just never cash them in. Pure cash for the retailer.

True, that, Gilly.Sa... (Below threshold)
Tom M:

True, that, Gilly.
Same as not counting deposits till the job is done.
I supose the biggest gripe CNN could say is that it creates more cost due to continued advertising. I don't think the stores mind. Amazon is probably the most amazing part of the story, with nobody surprised.

Don't forget this story Pau... (Below threshold)
Wes:

Don't forget this story Paul: Music downloads on track for record year

But, but -- I heard on AirA... (Below threshold)

But, but -- I heard on AirAmerica that the economy was tanking!

Liberals wouldn't lie about that, would they?

Paul-Think of h... (Below threshold)
scott:

Paul-

Think of how many simply get lost or forgotten about and expire.

Forget the interest free loan. The real payout is when people just never cash them in. Pure cash for the retailer.

Check your state laws... I'm pretty sure most states consider them akin to "unclaimed funds" from forgotten bank accounts, utility deposits and the like- and the state gets to keep the cash...

Falze:Don't you... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Falze:

Don't you think we're getting awfully close to not being able to 'measure' holiday spending by Dec. 26th anymore? Heck we bought my side of the family gift cards, it's what they asked for. So that (I'm throwing a figure out here) $150 we spent, whatever percentage of our total Christmas spending that is, doesn't even count.

Except that with gift cards, they know how many they sold, so there can be a pretty accurate projection of how many will be redeemed. While it may not "count" as sales from an accounting perspective, retailers can have a pretty accurate picture of the impact the gift cards will have down the road.

At least that's my totally uninformed theory.

Eric.

I wouldn't be <a href="http... (Below threshold)
ICallMasICM:

I wouldn't be jumping up and down over some of the economic news that is out there.

The other boon to retailers... (Below threshold)
Teri:

The other boon to retailers with gift cards is that people almost always will spend a little more than the card. It's hard to pick out exactly to the penny $25 or $50 worth of stuff, so people would either have to leave value on the card or pay extra.

I almost always pay extra as it hurts to leave anything on the card. I wouldn't be surprised if retailers' projections include a "buy up" factor for card redemption.

I blame George Bush for ... (Below threshold)
CorporateLeech:

I blame George Bush for this economy!

Uhuh, like most appologist for Bush, you blame a bad economy on Clinton or some mysterious liberal elite force in the universe, but when things go good it's Bush.
I guess it was Bush who invented the holiday shopping season too. Oops! damn I am always accidently advocating a War on Christmas. I meant to say... I guess it was Bush who invented the Christmas shopping season too. And the gift card was masterminded by Rove.

Well CorpLeech, the recessi... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

Well CorpLeech, the recession started on Clinton's watch...based mainly on a tech bubble economy that was, like most of the Clinton era and accomplishments, phony. Sort of like the phony "surplus" budget meme. It never existed. It was a 10 year projection that assummed unrealistic 1990s tech bubble economic growth and no increase in governemtn spending--something the Clinton adminsitration knew to be completely unrealistic...but hey, it only had to fool the public until he got out of office...it didn't actually have to accomplish anything...just like most Leftist agendas accomplish nothing...

How about this...it was Bush who lowered taxes to give people more of their money to spend at Christmas?

"but! but! Clinton!" wahh.<... (Below threshold)
CorporateLeech:

"but! but! Clinton!" wahh.

I heard Robert Reich on NPR... (Below threshold)

I heard Robert Reich on NPR explain that all the positive indicators are meaningless, it's the drop in median incomes that should worry us. What a tool.

like most of the Clinto... (Below threshold)
CorporateLeech:

like most of the Clinton era and accomplishments, phony.

Yes, that's right. Damnit. You have caught on! All the success of Clinton's 2 terms were manufactured by the Super Powered Elite Liberal Media Cabal (SPELMC). Drats! There goes our plans to take over the world using CNN and Elite Liberal Hollywood B actors (ELHBA)! You wingnuts are just too bright for us!




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