MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse reported that during the holiday season – Oct. 31 to Dec. 24 – U.S.
consumers spent an estimated $36.4 billion, a 15.4% year-on-year
increase over the 2009 holiday season. Apparel was by far the strongest category but consumer electronics also showed significant gains.

“Today eCommerce accounts for a much larger share of overall retail sales compared to a few years ago. And during this holiday season, it registered double digit growth for 6 out of 7 weeks,: noted Michael McNamara, Vice President, for MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse. “In terms of sub-categories, apparel was the clear leader, helping increase the channel's overall lift. In terms of share, online apparel sales during the holiday season accounted for 18.8% of total sales in that category, compared to 16.9% in 2009. As for some of the other sub-sectors, online electronics, not surprisingly, also recorded significant gains, while Jewelry, although still in positive territory, lagged behind.”

MasterCard Advisors said that in terms of highlights, there were six days in the 2010 season that surpassed $1 billion in sales compared with three days in 2009. Top days included Tuesday November 30, which registered $1.16 billion in sales, and Wednesday December 1, registering $1.13 billion. The Monday after Thanksgiving generated $999.3 million in sales, a 25.3% increase compared to the Monday after Thanksgiving in 2009.

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