Albany-- All signs point to a profitable holiday season. The national economy grew faster in the last quarter than in the past 19 years. So what does this mean for South Georgia's shopping season?
Stephanie Boyd is getting ready for her first holiday shopping season. Her business, Pawprints and Pineapples, is only a month old--but she's had better than expected sales, "The first month has been great, it's really surprising, there are a lot of people in Albany that spoil their dogs rotten."
While Boyd has been selling a lot of doggie treats--most other businesses in Albany have had it rough. "Yes, they were hit hard and I understand that October was a very slow month in Albany for lots of small business." Marilyn Hedrick, branch manager at A.G. Edwards and Sons in Albany, keeps her finger on the pulse of the local economy. She says the national growth will trickle down to Southwest Georgia, "The proof is in the hard numbers and earnings have just been better and that bodes well for everyone because that money recirculates all through the economy."
Hedrick thinks consumer confidence is rising--and Albany retailers will feel the effects, "I think we will go out and spend money and make this a good holiday season for our retailers." That's good news for businesses like Pawprints and Pineapples.
Boyd says, "I can see where things are picking up. For me being a new business it's fortunate cause people want to see what I have but I have seen it pick up and I do think it will be a good Christmas season." A hope this business owner is banking on.
Analysts think the economy will continue to grow at a slower, but healthy, rate of about four percent.