Candy & Packaged Beverages Begin to See Positive Spend Numbers Return at C-stores


ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Consumer spending and trips continued to improve last week as some areas of the country began gradually lifting stay-at-home restrictions and more Americans received stimulus payments.

According to the latest weekly report from NACS and PDI on how COVID-19 is impacting consumer behavior, the week ended April 26 showed that dollars per transaction in nearly every category saw improved performance vs. the prior week when dollars per transaction slipped.

The hard-hit candy category inched up positive spend numbers for the first time since March, and packaged beverages also experienced a surge. The alcohol and other tobacco products categories continued to outperform other categories, while non-edible groceries and frozen foods are still seeing growth albeit small.

Spend per trip stood at 24.9 percent last week, down slightly from 25.5 percent for the week ended April 19.

The decline in year-over-year dollar sales continued to ease (down 1.8 percent for the week ended April 26 vs. down 5 percent for the week ended April 19), primarily because trips aren't down as much (down 21.3 percent for the week ended April 26 vs. down 24.3 percent for the week ended April 19).

Federal stimulus checks, states easing restrictions and consumers' fatigue with stay-at-home orders all likely contributed to the deceleration in trip decline, according to the associations.

Powered by PDI Insights Cloud, the weekly report provides consumer trip and basket-level data and analysis that will enable essential businesses around the United States to deliver what their customers want and need right now. To access the report, click here.

Alexandria-based NACS is the leading global trade association dedicated to advancing convenience and fuel retailing. It has more than 1,500 retailer and 1,600 supplier members from more than 50 countries.

PDI is an enterprise management software provider for the convenience retail and petroleum wholesale markets.