Mastercard SpendingPulse released its holiday forecast on Monday, with U.S. retail sales expected to rise 7.4% for the season, excluding autos and gas. Shoppers are expected to return to stores with in-store sales forecast to jump 8.9% versus 2020, or up 6.6% excluding autos and gas. And e-commerce is expected to increase 7.6%. "This holiday season will be defined by early shopping, bigger price tags and digital experiences. Over the past two years, retailers have learned a lot about what shoppers want and need, bringing us into an exciting new age of retail resilience," said Steve Sadove, senior advisor for Mastercard Inc. /zigman2/quotes/207581792/composite MA +0.69% With supply chain challenges and labor shortages impacting retail, Mastercard SpendingPulse expects promotions to launch early. And with high savings and federal stimulus boosting bank accounts, the group expects splurges on things like luxury items to continue through the holidays. Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. /zigman2/quotes/200566298/composite DKS +1.51% and the U.S. Postal Service are among those that have already announced seasonal hiring plans. The SPDR S&P Retail ETF /zigman2/quotes/206947004/composite XRT -0.53% has gained 44.4% for the year to date while the benchmark S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -0.11% is up 18.7% for the period.