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Conference Board Predicts Strong Holiday Spending


New York City, U.S. households are expected to spend an average of $471 on gifts during the holiday season, up from last year’s estimate of $449, according to the Conference Board. The survey is more optimistic than other recent surveys, which have shown shoppers to be in a less giving mood.

The survey of Christmas gift-spending intentions, which sampled 5,000 U.S. households, reported that the top Christmas spenders will be East South Central households (Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee), which intend to spend $583. Lowest Christmas spending will be in the West North Central region (Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota), where consumers intend to spend $397 on Christmas gifts.

One-third of all households will spend $500 or more on Christmas gifts, with 35% spending between $200 and $500. The remaining 31% planned to spend less than $200.

Meanwhile, 38% of all consumers will buy Christmas gifts on the Internet, the same percentage as a year ago. Forty percent of shoppers will buy books; 39% will purchase apparel and footwear.

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