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Economic Development News Retailing And Restaurants

Most consumers will spend like last year

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New York City — U.S. households plan to spend an average of $563 on gifts this holiday season, down slightly from $576 last year, according to The Conference Board.

Again, consumers are not willing to pay full price. More than 60 percent expect at least a quarter of their purchases to be on sale or discounted.

The survey of holiday gift spending intentions announced today was conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen in October.

Approximately 9 percent of consumers plan to spend more this year on holiday gifts, compared with 11 percent last year. About 64 percent plan to spend about the same as last year, and 27 percent said they plan to spend less.

“Continued job and wage growth, and a confident consumer are likely to make this another good holiday season for retailers,” said Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “This season is shaping up to mirror last year’s, with consumers unwilling to pay full price for gifts, and with bargains and incentives driving their spending decisions.”

The number of consumers shopping online continues to grow. More than three-quarters say they expect to purchase at least some of their holiday gifts online. More than a third said they plan to purchase at last half their gifts online.

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