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Ecommerce, Luxury Growth Leaders in March

NEW YORK - The MasterCard Advisors Spending-Pulse report, which tracks retail and services sales growth, reported good increases in March for the ecommerce and luxury sectors.
     Ecommerce posted its fifth consecutive month of double- digit growth, with sales up 16.1%.
     The Luxury Index, which includes department stores, general apparel categories, and highend restaurants/food stores, increased 8.5% - the largest year-over-year increase since December 2010 and the sixth consecutive month of growth.
     Michael McNamara, vp of research and analysis for Master- Card Advisors, said gas prices are impacting shopping behavior.
     "High gas prices typically result in consumers consolidating shopping trips, shopping closer to home, and making fewer trips," he said.