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 epidemic 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: August 4, 2021

For the week ending August 1, consumer spending growth decelerated across almost all tracked segments compared to 2019. The only two bright spots of continued growth acceleration were Lodging and Movie Theaters.


Retail categories decelerated across the board compared to 2019. Of note is Walmart, as it  entered a solid decline in spending of 8% compared to 2019.


In the Entertainment segment, Fast Food & Restaurants’ growth slowed compared to 2019, but are still in the double digits for growth. Video Games decelerated growth to levels not seen since the beginning of the year compared to 2019.


While Airlines show accelerating declines compared to 2019, Lodging posts higher spending growth. Because the airline transactions are likely offset from when the trips occur, this could be an indication that late summer/early fall plane travel will be easing up.


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