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 28, 2021

The week ending April 25 shows consumer spending in Travel and Entertainment to decline further compared to last week and Retail to modestly gain. All Travel categories saw lower growth compared to last week with the largest impact seen in Lodging and Travel Bookings. The Fast-Food segment shows the first growth rate below 20% compared to 2019 in the past month while Restaurants remain fairly steady at 18% growth compared to 2019.


Discount and Variety Stores saw an uptick in growth compared to last week while Wholesale Clubs and Home Supply Warehouses showed continued slow growth compared to 2019. Amazon experienced similar slowing growth while Walmart ticked back up into growth compared to 2019.


Entertainment spending, and Restaurants in particular, are maintaining high levels of spending compared to 2019 though that growth is slowing. Video Games continue to have significantly drop its growth compared to 2019.


Airline spending’s recovery curve flattened last week with the most apparent reversal for Alaska Airlines. Lodging spending, meanwhile, crossed back over to a decline compared to 2019 for the overall category and for Holiday Inn specifically.


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