As the U.S. emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, the general and business press has been filled with bullish news, including projections that the American economy will expand this year at the largest annual rate of growth since 1984. According to a new KPMG study, consumer spending is increasing in retail categories across the board, a first since KPMG launched the bimonthly survey in April 2020. Notably, sectors outside the home such as restaurants and entertainment turned positive, suggesting consumers are anticipating a return to pre-pandemic behaviors. Experience-based spending on travel, dining and entertainment is expected to ramp up and continue this trajectory.
In the new report The Big Thaw, KPMG reveals key findings from its survey of 1000 consumers:
“It’s encouraging to see that spending is rebounding across retail categories. There is much to be optimistic about as more and more people are vaccinated,” said KPMG Advisory Industry Leader, Consumer & Retail Scott Rankin.
KPMG has several recommendations for businesses in the current environment. For a start, the firm recommends that businesses heavily invest in digital technology to deliver the experiences and value propositions that consumers desire. Additionally, companies should take advantage of the upswing in the economy to restructure their operating models to enable customer centricity, faster supply chains and improved balance sheets.
“Businesses that pivoted swiftly during the pandemic to create more flexibility can be optimistic about their prospects as the recovery accelerates,” said KPMG National Sector Leader, Consumer & Retail Matt Kramer.
To schedule an interview with Scott Rankin or Matt Kramer, contact Melanie Batley.
To read the full report or review the findings, click here.
 Ben Casselman, “Strong U.S. Job Growth in March Fuels Optimism on Recovery,” The New York Times, April 2, 2021.