Holiday Spending Expected to be Down
Nov 21, 2006
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U.S. households are expected to spend an average of U.S. $449 on gifts during the holiday season, down moderately from last year’s estimate of $466, The Conference Board reports today. This survey of holiday gift spending intentions covers a nationally representative sample of 5,000 U.S. households. It was conducted for The Conference Board in November by TNS, the world’s largest custom research company.

The top holiday spenders will be New England households (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont) who intend to spend $545. Lowest holiday spending will be in the Mountain region (Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Nevada) where consumers intend to spend a mere $348 on Christmas gifts. Slightly more than 31 percent of all households will spend $500 or more on holiday gifts, with 36 percent spending $200-$500 and the remaining 33 percent planning to spend less than $200.

About 35 percent of all consumers will buy holiday gifts on the Internet, up from 33 percent a year ago. Books top the list of online holiday buying, with 40 percent saying they will buy books as gifts. Toys/games came in second with about 37 percent of consumers intending to purchase these gifts online. Apparel and footwear rank third as online holiday buying choices, followed closely by music videos and DVDs. Of the 33 percent who said they purchased holiday gifts last year on the Internet, 95 percent said they were satisfied with their online buying experience.

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