Oct 20, 2021 - Economy

Retailers gear up for holiday season swamped by supply problems

Illustration of a person carrying shopping bags.

Photo: Gary Hershorn/Getty Images

Retail execs are prepping for supply problems this holiday season. About 43% expect their ordered holiday inventory to be delayed — and 64% are concerned about receiving it in time for the holidays, according to a new Deloitte survey published Wednesday.

By the numbers: 43% of retailers placed their holiday orders earlier than they did last year — some as early as March.

Why it matters: Planning ahead may ease some of the supply chain pain for both shoppers and businesses. Companies have ordered early, and used alternate transportation options like air freight, as Axios’ Hope King reported.

Meanwhile, on the consumer side, 39% of those surveyed plan to start shopping earlier this year.

  • 68% of shoppers say they’ll start before Thanksgiving (compared to 61% who said so last year).
  • 43% will start before the end of October (38% last year).

Go deeper: Retailers to sell smaller, squishier toys this holiday season

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