FIRST Report

Facteus Insight Report on Spending and Transactions (FIRST) Gain Insight on Changes in Consumer Spending Transactions
Understand the Economy Through the Lens of Transaction Data

The FIRST Report is a series of weekly reports that will shed light on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the consumer economy in the US. We plan to look at three super categories of the consumer economy: Retail, Entertainment and Travel. Focusing on both sectors and individual merchants, we will provide insight into how consumers are being impacted and how they are reacting in this unprecedented time. Our intent is to help businesses, governments, and economists have a current, accurate view of the economy during the COVID-19 pandemic so that they can make informed and timely decisions.

FIRST Report: April 14, 2021

The week ending April 11 continues the steady trend in consumer spending compared to 2019, with gains week over week for the Travel categories. All Travel categories, except Cruise Lines, saw improvements in spending growth compared to 2019 with an average decline of 17% compared to 25% the week before. In the Retail category, gains were seen in Department Stores, Wholesale Clubs and Discount Stores, while Grocery and Variety Stores both showed week over week declines.


Overall consumer spending within retail remained flat, compared to 2019.  Department and Discount Stores, Amazon, and Home Supply Warehouses all showed a week over week gain, while Grocery Stores, Variety Stores and Walmart all showed week over week declines.


Segments within the Entertainment category all remained steady, with high levels of year over year spending growth across the board (except movie theaters). Video Games are maintaining its growth levels that it saw in early January.


Airline spending continued its recovery for both Alaska Airlines and United Airlines, in line with the overall category. Lodging spending has crossed the line to showing growth compared to 2019 for the overall category, and slight improvement week over week for Holiday Inn specifically.


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