What’s Behind the NRF’s Good News?

For the last few weeks, JCK’s “Big Picture Monday” has run
surveys that indicate decreased demand for jewelry. (See here.) So I
was pleasantly surprised to see this
from the National Retail Federation:

With fewer feeling economically
pinched this year, the National Retail Federation says people will spend an
average of $688.87 on holiday-related shopping, an elfin increase from last
year’s $681.83. Among the most hopeful signs is that 23% will ask for jewelry
this holiday, a 10% jump from last year.  

Now, maybe these results aren’t mutually exclusive: The
first two talked about affluent consumers, and the other talks about consumers
as a whole. And perhaps we shouldn’t put too much stock in these surveys.

But the question is: Does the industry have anything especially compelling to offer consumers this Christmas – other than bridal, and perhaps, the fad of
the moment, beads? Except for Sterling, very few companies are doing much in
the way of advertising. And people generally don’t think about buying in terms of categories; it’s not, “I want electronics.” It’s “I want an Ipad.” 

So why would demand increase – except, perhaps, consumers
are tired of not spending, and want to splurge a little? 

UPDATE: Maybe the Onion has the answer…

JCK News Director