Sarah Quinlan, head of market insights for Mastercard Advisors, disclosed the figure after the payments processor's analytics arm published its SpendingPulse retail report.
Regardless of thousands of store closings this year, Americans provided a last whirlwind of spending to give retailers their best Christmas season deals since 2011, figures discharged Tuesday appear. Shoppers are flush with confidence, as unemployment has ebbed and the housing market has remained solid, making consumers bold in their purchases.
IHS Markit pointed to strong macroeconomic factors such as a 17-year high in United States consumer confidence in November and a 17-year low in unemployment that allowed consumers to open their wallets.
Chicago-based retail research firm ShopperTrak predicted Tuesday, the day after Christmas, would be the fourth-busiest of the season in stores, with this coming Saturday ranking ninth.
Americans spent at a record pace this holiday shopping season, according to a report from MasterCard's SpendingPulse.
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They aren't just picking up final last-minute stocking stuffers, either, according to a survey by consultancy Deloitte. The National Retail Federation, the industry trade group, and other experts estimated about a 4% increase in sales this year.
But MasterCard's numbers suggest that the shopping season was even stronger than had been expected.
Despite those problems, forecasts indicated that this would be a good holiday shopping season.
Shoppers in the world's biggest economy spent generously over the "Black Friday" weekend in late November that kicks off the USA holiday shopping season, and buying picked up further in December, analysts said. Much of the growth Mastercard reported was powered by online shopping, up 18.1 percent compared with the same holiday period in 2016.
There was no place like home for the holidays for many shoppers, who sent sales of electronics and appliances up 7.5%, the strongest growth of the last 10 year.
"It's not the death of retail, it's not the death of spending, but post-recession, we don't buy goods just to buy goods", she said.
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