December retail sales slip after a record holiday season

  • Shoppers walk through Macy’s on Nov. 26, 2021, in New York. Americans slowed their spending from November to December as a trifecta of product shortages, surging prices and a surge of the highly contagious omicron curtailed spending. Retail sales fell 1.9% in December compared with the previous month when sales increased 0.3%, the U.S. Commerce Department said Friday. (AP Photo/Brittainy Newman, File)

NEW YORK — Americans overlooked shortages, spiking prices and uncertainty over the omicron variant to break spending records during the critical holiday shopping season. But figures released Friday show that after spending robustly early in the holiday season, consumers sharply slowed their purchases from November to December.