Guess Who’s Shopping More

As far as consumer spending goes, the higher you are the economic totem pole the better you’re doing. Has this trend trickled down to middle class and lower-earning consumers or is it just another sign of the growing wealth gap?

If you’re the type of shopper who frequents Nordstrom, Saks, and Macy’s, congratulations – you’re slowly but surely making your way back to the cashier.

The AP reports on new recent earnings reports from major retailers that suggest that wealthier Americans have begun to trek back to higher end retailers…to actually spend money.

But, for those of us currently stocking up on Vaseline for Black Friday shopping we’re still not shopping the way we used to.

However, don’t be completely discouraged by the news. It seems there’s encouraging news on both ends. The AP breaks it down under two categories: spenders and savers.

If you’re a spender (co-sign a car loan for me, please) they say:

Luxury department stores like Nordstrom and Saks are starting to get more traffic. Part of the reason is that they’ve rolled out some merchandise at slightly lower prices, which is helping to keep the affluent from trading down to other stores.

“If they do spend, it’s very scrutinized and it’s very value-driven,” said luxury retail analyst Robert Burke. “And they want items they can wear multiple places.”

If you’re classified as a saver (no, I’m not co-signing for you) it seems:

Kohl’s, a chain of midrange department stores, said more customers came into its stores in the third quarter and made more purchases, but they’re still limiting their spending.