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Deloitte: Consumer Spending Slightly Revived

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April consumer spending index rises, albeit modestly.

According to professional services firm Deloitte, consumer spending is alive and well.

"Real consumer spending has held up in recent months, and the outlook continues to remain positive," said Daniel Bachman, Deloitte's senior U.S. economist. "The slight uptick in [the April Deloitte Consumer Spending Index] was primarily due to the downward movement of unemployment insurance claims and the increase in median house prices. The decrease in the employment insurance claims was confirmed by the favorable April employment figures. Coupled with steady home prices, this will lift consumers' ability and willingness to spend."

"Real consumer spending has held up in recent months, and the outlook continues to remain positive."

The index, which comprises four components – tax burden, initial unemployment claims, real wages and real home prices – increased to 3.88 this month from 3.51 last month.  

"Retailers should take advantage of positive market conditions and consider how to extend sales momentum into the summer," said Alison Paul, vice chairman, Deloitte LLP and Retail & Distribution sector leader.

"Retailers' digital efforts can get consumers' attention and boost sales in the store, if organized effectively.  For example, rather than simply using online and mobile applications to drive purchases through those channels, retailers should consider the summer activities, vacations or events that influence purchases, and weave those into the digital experiences they offer.  

“Deloitte's latest research confirms that digital devices actually increase conversion rates by 40% when used before and during the shopping process, translating to a higher revenue opportunity for retailers that link their digital efforts to the in-store shopping journey, rather than exclusively focusing on driving online or mobile sales."

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