(AP) — As more children go back to the physical classroom and families look to restart their lives, back-to-school spending this year is expected to top pre-pandemic levels, according to one key spending measure.
Mastercard SpendingPulse, which tracks spending across all payment forms including cash, forecasts that spending will be up 5.5% between July 15 and Sept. 6. That’s compared with the year-ago period when sales rose only 1.2% as the pandemic wreaked havoc on schools’ reopening plans and back-to-school shopping.
In a more telling sign of a rebound, back-to-school sales should increase 6.7% on a two-year basis, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse. The figures exclude sales from autos and gas.