At this rate, with more and more positive economic data coming out on a seemingly daily basis, it won’t be long before we’re all looking back at the economic struggles of the past few years as a distant memory.
January saw a very surprising and unexpected increase in overall e-commerce sales and now data from MasterCard Advisors indicates that February sales have continued the upswing in the industry.
Consumers spent $13.8 billion online during the month of February, according to today’s MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse report. That’s a 13.2 percent increase over February of last year and marks the fourth consecutive month of double-digit growth for e-commerce sales.
MasterCard attributes the month’s strong performance to continued cold weather throughout most of the country and rising gas prices, which kept shoppers indoors.
“Not only are online sales doing well, e-retailers are stealing channel share from the bricks-and-mortar stores,” said John Gamel, a MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse analyst. “One thing to watch is gasoline prices. If they rise much higher, that will definitely help online sales even more.”
January’s e-commerce sales totaled $13.1 billion.
Apparel was once again the most robust category for online sales, increasing 15 percent over last year, though sales in the category are slowing some, according to MasterCard. Online jewelry sales rebounded from a 9.2 percent decline in January to post gains of 7.2 percent in February, while electronics enjoyed a sixth straight month of online sales growth, increasing 5.4 percent.
The MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse combines transaction information from its extensive credit and debit card network to tabulate the report every month.
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