Big Picture Monday: Your Weekly Economic Snapshot

JCK’s Big Picture Monday provides a weekly summary of economic indicators impacting the jewelry industry.

–       Holiday sales forecasts begin to appear: The National Retail Federation thinks sales will “go up 2 percent.” The International Council of Shopping Centers predicts the number will be between 3 and 3.5 percent for chain stores.

–       September retail sales were better than expected, buoyed by back to school shopping. And four out of five retailers saw sales grow in the third quarter.

–       Mall vacancy rates dipped for the first time in three years.

–       While big names like Kohl’s are in seasonal hiring mode, The New York Times says the overall retail job picture is “dim.” (Last week, the Washington Post disagreed.)

–       The Wall Street Journal says: “Bling is on the upswing.”