Retailers Rejoice: Holiday Shopping Soars to Pre-Recession Levels

Shoppers splurged this holiday season, by spending more than they have over the past three years, according to preliminary retail data from MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse, which tracks retail sales. In the 50 days before Christmas, spending rose 5.5 percent to exceed forecasts. In 2009, spending increased only 4 percent, and the year before, Americans tightened their buckles so much, sales dropped by 6 percent, reports the New York Times. All categories benefited, including apparel, jewelry, luxury goods and home furniture.


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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work