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Retailers Expect Increased Spending This Holiday Season

Despite cautious consumers, Wells Fargo Securities’ economists predict more than a 5% year-over-year increase in retail sales


CHARLOTTE — November 22, 2011  Wells Fargo Securities, part of Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC), today published its annual Holiday Sales Preview report , providing a positive outlook for retailers this holiday season. Wells Fargo Securities’ economists predict an increase of 5.2% in retail sales, compared to last year, despite current economic uncertainty. The prediction comes on the heels of solid back-to-back sales gains in September and October. Overall, consumer spending remains stronger than many analysts forecasted a few months ago, which is a positive sign for retailers and the broader economy.
 
“It is extremely rare that we have a holiday season where retail sales are really weak,” said Mark Vitner, senior economist for Wells Fargo Securities. “This year, we expect consumers will dig into savings or take advantage of historically low interest rates on consumer credit in order to fuel strong holiday sales. Fortunately, Santa somehow always finds a way.”
 
Despite economic conditions, retailers have seen an increase in sales for 16 consecutive months. While massive markdowns and door-buster giveaways won’t be the key themes this year, retailers will instead likely focus on short-term, targeted promotions.
 
Wells Fargo Securities’ economists expect the most popular gifts this holiday season to include gift cards, tablet computers, video games, and jewelry and accessories.
 
For more information about the Wells Fargo Securities’ economist team or to view the holiday report, please visit www.wellsfargo.com/economics.
 
About Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.3 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 stores, 12,000 ATMs, the Internet (wellsfargo.com and wachovia.com), and other distribution channels across North America and internationally. With approximately 275,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in America. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 23 on Fortune’s 2011 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially.
 
About Wells Fargo Securities
Wells Fargo Securities delivers a comprehensive set of capital markets products and services to customers, including originating and distributing public debt and equity, hedging interest rates, commodity and equity risks, advising on mergers and acquisitions, and originating structured lending facilities and municipal bonds. The institutional capital markets business is comprised of more than 3400 team members in 40+ offices across the United States, Europe and Asia.
 
Wells Fargo Securities is the trade name for certain capital markets and investment banking services of Wells Fargo & Company and its subsidiaries, including Wells Fargo Securities, LLC, member FINRA and SIPC, Wells Fargo Bank, National Association, Wells Fargo Securities International Limited (authorized by the U.K. FSA), Wells Fargo Securities Asia Limited (licensed by the HK SFC), and Wells Fargo Securities (Japan) Co., Ltd. (registered with the KLFB).

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