Retail Federation Releases Best Holiday Forecast in Years

The National Retail Federation predicted holiday sales will jump 4.1 percent this year, higher than the group’s 10-year average of 3.5 percent.

That number would represent a dip from 2011’s holiday sales, which grew 5.6 percent.

Still, NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said this was the group’s best holiday forecast since the recession began in December 2007.

“In spite of the uncertainties that exist in our economy and among consumers, we believe we’ll see solid holiday sales growth this year,” he said in a statement.

The group said that consumers were “cautious but capable,” noting increased confidence and home prices.

The forecast looked even better for online sales, which NRF division Shop.org predicted would rise 12 percent.

“Online retail has been a bright spot for years and we don’t expect that trend to change anytime soon, especially with the growth in mobile,” Shay added.