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Consumers not afraid of Halloween spending


WASHINGTON — The air is getting colder and retailers are already gearing up for the Christmas season, but before they do that, they will have to get through Halloween.

According to a recent NRF consumer spending survey conducted by BIGinsight, Halloween will be a big deal this year, with seven in 10 Americans saying they plan on celebrating the holiday. Consumers are expecting to spend more too; the average person will spend $79.82 on decorations, costumes and candy, up from $72.31 last year, with total Halloween spending expected to reach $8 billion.

“By the time Halloween rolls around each year it’s safe to say Americans have already spent two months preparing for one of the fastest-growing and most widely-loved holidays of the year,” said NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay. “Retailers know that when it comes to Halloween, new costume ideas for children, adults and pets, and the latest in home and yard décor top people’s shopping lists. We expect retailers to stock their shelves well ahead of time to capture the attention of eager holiday shoppers.”

Custumes continue to be a big source of spending, especially for families with children, who will spend a total of $1.1 billion on their children’s costumes, up slightly from $1 billion last year. Not to be outdone by their children, adults will spend $1.4 billion on costumes, up from $1.2 billion in 2011. Pets are also a growing market, with pet owners planning to spend $370 million on pint-sized costumes, up from $310 million in 2011.

Despite record spending figures for this year’s Halloween holiday, one-fourth of U.S. consumers (25.9%) say the state of the economy will impact their Halloween plans. To compensate, 18% will make a costume instead of buying one and over one-third (36.1%) will buy less candy.

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