The Wider World

Big holiday spending seen

RECORD HIGH holiday shopping is predicted this year by the National Retail Federation (Flickr/Yisong Yue).

Santa Claus will have a good Christmas.

A record high in holiday retail sales is predicted in spite of all the complications caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

United Press International is reporting that the National Retail Federation projects a 10.5 percent increase over 2020. Not included are the sales of automobiles, gasoline and restaurant food and drink.

“There is considerable momentum heading into the holiday shopping season,” said NRF President Matthew Shay. “Consumers are in a very favorable position going into the last few months of the year as income is rising and household balance sheets have never been stronger.”

Despite lingering concerns about COVID-19 in crowded shopping areas, consumers are expected to keep on spending online to boost the overall volume of sales.

Biden’s programs still not a sure thing

A PROPOSED TAX on “unrealized gains” is a sticking point in negotiations (Shutterstock).

Wrangling among Democrats in Congress is keeping President Joe Biden’s social safety net and climate change legislation from crossing the finish line.

According to The New York Times, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) is opposed to the proposed tax on the “unrealized gains” of investments of billionaires, calling it unfair and divisive.

Talks continue with Manchin and another centrist – Sen. Krysten Sinema (D-Arizona) – whose objections have trimmed Biden’s plan from $3 trillion to $1.75 trillion in spending.

The White House is hoping to reach consensus before the president leaves for a trip to Europe.

Also in the news….

  • The first passport with an “X” gender mark has been issued by U.S. State Department for people not identifying as male or female.
  • “Some complacency” on the set of the western movie “Rust” could be a factor in the fatal shooting of one person and wounding of another by actor Alec Baldwin when he fired a weapon accidentally loaded with love ammunition.

Sports: Are Braves the team of destiny?

The Atlanta Braves won just 88 games in the regular season. Eight teams did better. But after Tuesday’s 6-2 win over the Houston Astros in the first game of the 2021 World Series, the team from Georgia is just three wins away from becoming world champs. Game Two is today (Wednesday) in Houston at 5:09 p.m.

Weather: A warm October … briefly

The West Orange County Area will have mid-summer weather, but not for long. Thursday’s forecast calls for a daytime high of 90 (overnight low of 59) with sunny skies. That number will drop to 81 on Friday and 73 on Saturday as clouds begin to move in. As for coastal Huntington Beach, Thursday will peak at 85, with the thermometer falling to 75 on Friday and then 67 on Saturday.


Categories: The Wider World

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