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Shoe Prices Moderate to Slowest Growth in 20 Months

Consumer prices rose by 7.1% in November compared to last year, according to a Tuesday report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This marks the smallest 12-month increase since the period ending in December 2021 and a slowdown from October’s 7.7% growth and September’s 8.2% year over year growth. Compared to October 2022, prices in November were up 0.1%.

Excluding volatile food and energy costs, the Core CPI rose 0.2% from October and 6% from the same month in 2021.

“While the trajectory is positive, it will come as scant comfort to millions of Americans who are still facing prices that are 7.1% higher than at this point last year,” said Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData in a statement.

Footwear retail prices also slowed in November, and were up 2.3% compared to last November, the slowest growth in 20 months. According to the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America, this slowdown affirms the group’s prediction that prices will continue to moderate as interest rate hikes tamper purchases and demand.

Men’s footwear was up 2.4%, women’s was up 2.2% and children’s was up 2.3%. While FDRA forecasts that inflation will continue to slow in the following months, the group confirmed its outlook that 2022 will show the largest full-year increase in retail footwear prices in close to 40 years.

Steve Lamar, American Apparel & Footwear Association president and CEO, said in a statement that prices are still higher than ideal, despite the slowdown.

“Rising prices for clothes and shoes were not the gift we were wishing for this holiday season,” Lamar said. “Although the Federal Reserve can slow rate increases to prevent a recession, the apparel and footwear inflation numbers remain worrisome, particularly footwear. We’re still asking Uncle Sam for tariff relief to help offset these challenges.”

Online prices in November also slowed, dropping 1.9% year over year, according to recent data from Adobe. This marked the steepest annual drop in 31 months since May 2020. November’s drop in online prices was largely driven by heavy discounting during Thanksgiving week and Cyber Monday.

Despite persisting inflation, holiday sales are predicted to grow over last year, though at a slower pace. Total sales between Nov. 1 and Dec. 31 are expected to grow between 6% and 8% compared to 2021, according to the National Retail Federation. The growth would represent a total of between $942.6 billion and $960.4 billion in sales, on top of last year’s record-breaking 13.5% growth to $889.3 billion.

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