Overseas Headlines – December 28, 2021

December 28, 2021

United States:

Holiday Sales Jump 8.5% as U.S. Consumers Return to Retailers

“U.S. holiday sales jumped 8.5% from last year as consumers spent more money on clothes, jewelry and electronics, a report from Mastercard SpendingPulse showed. Sales grew across the board, both in stores and online, for the holiday season defined as Nov. 1 to Dec. 24. Consumers started searching for gifts earlier than usual with supply chains roiling retailers and stores offering more promotions to jumpstart the holiday shopping season.”



European Gas Posts Longest Declining Streak in More Than a Year

“ European natural gas extended its declining streak to the longest in more than a year as shipments from the U.S. look set to ease the region’s energy crunch. Benchmark Dutch front-month gas fell for a fifth day, dropping as much as 9.2% in Amsterdam. More vessels carrying liquefied natural gas are heading to Europe, raising expectations the new supplies will help to re-balance the tight market.”




Prices Set to Take Center Stage at Bank of Japan’s January Meet

“Bank of Japan board members are likely to pay closer attention to price trends at a meeting in January as they consider whether it still makes sense to flag downward risks for inflation. “Inflation expectations, including medium- to long-term ones, have risen recently, and inflationary pressure is expected to strengthen,” one of the board’s nine members said at the December policy meeting, according to an opinion summary released by the central bank Monday.”




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