Holiday sales (excluding car purchases, gasoline, and dining out) are expected to grow about 3.7% this year. This is higher than the 2.5% average over the past ten years but much lower than the 4.1% in 2014. Low income growth, slow job creation, and concerns about a possible government shutdown were all factors that led consumers to question whether they had the ability to buy the things they wanted. NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said: "We have to recognize that people are actually getting their goods, but they are probably getting them a little bit cheaper than last year", meaning that people are consuming goods, but they are bargain hunting more than they used to, which will increase competition among retailers. Another reason for the lower growth numbers is the fact that younger households have been benefitting from job and income growth more than any other demographic, but have been spending their money on cars, gasoline, and dining out, which do not appear on the NRF holiday tally. Other consulting firms agree that this year will show significantly less growth during the holiday season than last year.