The Atlantic: How the Fiscal Cliff Stole Christmas
Reuters reports that, according to early data, the U.S. may have just experienced its weakest holiday shopping season since the woeful days of 2008, when the country was still dealing with, you know, a financial crisis and a recession. Holiday-related spending from late October through Christmas inched up 0.7 percent this year, down from last year's 2 percent growth, according to MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse. Other sales trackers found similarly meager results.
What happened? Weather was probably part of the problem. Superstorm Sandy smashed into the Atlantic in November, bringing business to a halt, and winter storms in December may have also depressed sales.
But Santa, Rudolph, Dancer, and Prancer also appear to have collided head on with the fiscal cliff. Americans are watching the negotiations in Washington carefully, and after months of shrugging them off, recent surveys show the impasse in Congress appears to finally be taking a psychological toll on country, making everyone feel a bit nervous about opening their wallets...
| Couldn't possibly be the fact that people are worried, unemployment is going back up, and taxes are going up at the first of the year. Naaah...|
Guess who author and associate editor Jordan Weissmann blames?
Posted by: Pappy 2012-12-27