National Retail Federation

Retailers expect even stronger growth in 2015

Retailers expect even stronger growth in 2015

The stars are aligning for a robust year in retail — but the spoils aren't likely to be shared equally.

Decreasing unemployment, brightening consumer confidence and plummeting gas prices point to a boost in consumer spending in 2015 that should be more widespread and democratic than the spotty economic recovery of the past few years, experts say.

Retail sales are expected to rise 4.5 percent this year, a full percentage point more than the 3.4 percent growth in 2014, according to Kantar Retail, which excluded car dealers, gas and food service from its analysis.

Retail sales total $2.6 trillion annually and constitute a substantial portion of consumer spending,...