It's still thankfully a bit early to start seeing holiday sales at our favorite stores, but it's not too early for economist to make forecasts about what that holiday season is going to look like. And the International Council of Shopping Centers thinks it will be a positive one, with shoppers spending an average of $702 this year, up from $677 in 2014.
Among the categories of goods, the biggest gainer figures to be furniture and home furnishings, which are forecast to be up 4.9 percent over last year. Also predicted to be up by more than 3 percent are clothing, and health and personal care items.
Businesses are starting to get ready for the season as well. Macy's has already announced plans to hire 85,000 workers to handle the holiday crush.