As consumer sentiment has dwindled in recent weeks, alongside uncertainty over European sovereign debt crises and political standstills in the U.S., many analysts have worried that another recession is near.
Fortunately, a panel of economists surveyed by The Associated Press this week has concluded that a double-dip recession is not likely, although the economy is not likely to show major improvements over the next year either.
"The poll found leading economists have grown more pessimistic in recent weeks," the AP reports. "They say high unemployment and weak consumer spending will hold back the U.S. economy into next year."
Beth Ann Bovino, a senior economist at Standard & Poor's, suggested the economic recovery has slowed from half-speed to quarter-speed.
However, a separate poll of Bloomberg economists concluded that consumer spending will drive what recovery does unfold through this year.
In the meantime, retailers suffering from poor sales should invest in market research strategies to take advantage of all sales potential. Mystery shopping and guerrilla marketing campaigns can help attract customers in a more precise manner.