Retail sales in the U.S. fell by 0.7% in December, marking the third straight month of decline. Online sales fell by 5.8% from November but were up more than 19% YoY.
- Holiday retail sales rose by 8.3% YoY, according to the National Retail Federation. The NRF had previously projected holiday sales would rise by 3.6%-5.2%
- The WSJ attributed December's decline to the continuous rise in COVID-19 cases, leading states like California to impose new restrictions.
- 140,000 Americans lost their job last month, ending a seven-month job growth streak. 965,000 Americans filed for initial unemployment benefits.
- The U.S. has ramped up vaccination efforts in January, with more than 12.2 million Americans receiving the first dose, according to the CDC.
- Last month, the U.S. passed a $900B stimulus package with $600 direct payments and $300/week unemployment benefits. President-elect Joe Biden unveiled a $1.9T proposal that will provide additional stimulus checks of $1,400.