(NBC) — Finally, a little good news when it comes to the economy. A new report shows consumers are more confident than they’ve been in months and believe the future is looking brighter for their finances.
It’s now causing a surge in early shopping for the holidays. The calendar might not even read September yet but holiday cheer is spreading early for inflation-weary families.
A new survey shows consumer confidence in the economy rising for the first time in four months, with expectations for the future also inching up thanks in part to falling prices at the pump.
“If fuel prices go down everything else kind of goes along with it,” a customer at a gas station says.
This new confidence is now driving a super-early wave of holiday shopping.
Fears of growing inflation are causing more than a third of consumers to buy their holiday gifts with the summer heat still scorching.
“Many people were like, ‘you’re already shopping?’ I was like, ‘yeah,'” Mariss Kile said.
Kile, a mother of three, started shopping for the holidays months ago because she was concerned that rising inflation could mean fewer sales in the fall.
“My middle daughter is really into ‘Ella Miles’ and ‘Rainbow High,'” Kile said. “And so I was able to get a lot of those items for less than half of the price.”
Hoping to cash in, retailers like Costco, Sam’s Club and Home Depot are already rolling out holiday sales and displays with big discounts on everything from apparel and appliances to sporting goods and toys.
Walmart is unwrapping its annual “Top Toy” list nearly a month early this year and features a majority of items under $50. And it added a new budget-friendly category called “Toys under $25.”
“We know customers are looking for incredible values. And they’re definitely starting to think about the holidays a little bit earlier than they have in years past,” said Jessica Mireles, Walmart Senior Director for Toys.
With many retailers saddled with huge inventory surpluses from the pandemic. Experts say now is also a good time to score deals on big-ticket items, like a new tv or laptop.
If prices are down now, consumers are smart enough to realize that they should actually jump on it now and not wait, because the future looks uncertain.