Among the main findings of IRI’s survey, “Rethinking Retail: Holiday Shopper Insights and Recommendations”:
94% state spending time with family is more important this year than last. 80% plan a greater emphasis on holiday meals and entertaining than last year. 74% state they plan to give the same number or more gifts. 65% will focus more on religious celebrations. 63% plan to buy as many or more expensive gifts. “We expect a consumer backlash this holiday season and a reverse of the misery effect consumers have felt this year,” said IRI Consulting and Innovation President Thom Blischok. “Shoppers have affirmed…they will continue their holiday rituals, but will temper their spending through increased use of merchandising and promotions.”
Additional findings from the IRI study, below.
Shoppers to Take Advantage of Promotions
Some three-quarters (74%) of shoppers will take more advantage of in-store promotions this year over last year, demonstrating shoppers’ desire to preserve rituals but their attempt to do so more affordably. Consumers also noted:
56% will take advantage of sales or promotions seen on TV or heard on the radio. 53% will use coupons in newspapers more. 43% will seek out more “2 for 1″ and similar promotions. “In addition to promotions, consumers will make better use of credit card or store reward points and utilize the websites, blogs and social-networking media to find deals,” Blischok said.
I agree with you that it is strange that this retail ETF is going up. I think a good strategy would be to buy puts on it, if options are available. I've just spent the last half hour looking for a double reverse retail short etf.