Anna Gragert
December 24, 2015 12:05 pm

While warmer temperatures often make us think of global warming and melting glaciers, it isn’t only Mother Nature who’s being affected by the December thermometer. Since we tend to buy jackets, sweaters, gloves, snow boots, hats, and the like when it’s cold, this helps the economy. Specifically, our frequent winter-related purchases keep department stores’ business booming. And what happens when we don’t need these products? Well, they sit on the shelves and wait until a sale encourages consumers to whisk them away to the register.

During the first 20 days of this month, over 2,600 record-high temperatures were recorded for East Coast cities. Already, on Christmas Eve morning, similar record-high temperatures have been noted in New York City, Philadelphia, Providence, and more. NYC’s old record high was 63ºF, but was replaced by this year’s 8AM, 70ºF temperature. (Does this mean that ugly Christmas tank tops will become a thing?)

Essentially, a white Christmas is highly unlikely for many eastern locations, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s map. So, it’s no wonder why stores currently feature stacks and stacks of snow gear! Weather consulting firm Planalytics actually found out that US-based shops lost about $185 million because of November’s warm climate. Even the recent week of December 12th demonstrated that things haven’t been looking up because this season’s clothing sales were down 30% in several major cities.

On the plus side: the post-Christmas sales are going to make our wallets very, very happy.

“At department stores, we’re seeing racks of inventory sitting in the hallways,” NASDAQ’s lead consumer analyst Jonathan Eyl told Tech Insider. “Coupled with the weather, discounts are going to be crazy.”

In addition to the unusual weather patterns, Eyl noticed that holiday shoppers aren’t going for the pricier gifts. Since many are focusing their financial energy on paying off college loans, mortgages, and car payments, few individuals are itching to buy costly, designer goods for everyone they know.

After taking all of this into account, we have a feeling that going shopping this weekend would definitely not be a bad idea. (Especially if you’ve had your eye on a thick, woolen sweater.)

[Image via Shutterstock]

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