SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Americans will increase their spending this holiday season, but their dollars won't go as far as they did pre-pandemic.
A new study by commercial real estate firm Jones Lang LaSalle says the average consumer will spend $870 on holiday-related purchases this year, up 20 percent from 2020, the height of the Coronavirus pandemic. The amount includes spending on themselves.
This year, the economy has reopened and retail has no capacity restrictions. However, international supply chain issues persist, leading to dozens of cargo ships stranded off the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Craig Killman, JLL's retail advisory lead for San Diego, cautioned that the supply issues will lead to higher prices and that San Diegans should shop early to avoid shortages.
"It's like a major, multi-car pileup on the 5-Freeway," he said. "If you think about a container ship that has 20,000 containers on it and you try to get that on a train, that train's 44 miles long."
The Coronavirus outbreak has delayed production in China, while there remains a shortage of workers in the U.S. to get the products from the ships to the shelves. On Wednesday, the Biden administration announced the Port of L.A. would double its hours to 24/7 to deal with the bottleneck. Long Beach made a similar change a few weeks ago.
The ports account for 40 percent of the container traffic that enters the U.S.
Meanwhile, the Labor Department announced Wednesday that consumer prices rose 5.4 percent over the last year nationwide, and 6.5 percent in San Diego County.