How much do Americans spend on Christmas? | WORLD
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How much do Americans spend on Christmas?

BACKGROUNDER | Retailers forecast record sales of up to $966 billion this holiday season

Matt Rourke/AP

How much do Americans spend on Christmas?
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Christmas is easily the most wonderful time of the year—for U.S. retailers, that is. Americans are some of the world’s biggest spenders during the winter gifting season. In 2022, retailers racked up record sales of $936 billion, and are forecast to reach up to $966 billion in 2023.

How much does the typical American spend for Christmas? Americans spend an average of $866 each holiday season, according to data from the National Retail Federation. Of the $875 that Americans plan to spend this year, 71 percent will go toward gifts for friends, family, and co-workers. The rest will pay for seasonal items like food, candy, and decorations.

How much of that will be spent on Black Friday? For many Americans, Black Friday is when holiday spending begins. This year, most shoppers plan to spend $101 to $200 on Black Friday, according to an Attest shopper trends report. Sixteen percent are planning to spend up to $300.

What’s the most popular Christmas gift? Gift cards and vouchers are ranked as the most preferred gift for both men and women. Clothing and accessories come in second place, with books, electronics, and personal care items competing for third.

Who gets the goods? Besides immediate family and friends, pets are common gift recipients. In a Personal Capital survey last year, one in three dog owners said they bought a present for their pooch. Only 22 percent of cat owners planned to buy their cat a gift.

Has inflation affected holiday spending? Despite survey data suggesting Americans are budgeting more for gifts this year, many say they’re adjusting their spending due to the rising cost of living. About 74 percent of Americans cite inflation as a reason for buying fewer gifts, according to the BMO Real Financial Progress Index. Belt-tightening plans this year include buying less expensive gifts (38 percent of Americans) and trimming holiday gift lists (26 percent). But nearly two-thirds of Americans said they still plan to give to charitable organizations.

How many Americans are planning a credit card Christmas? A majority of Americans plan to take on debt in order to cover holiday spending—55 percent in 2023, up from 52 percent last year, BMO Financial Group reported. That includes credit cards, buy-now-pay-later programs, and lines of credit. Americans say it will take them three months, on average, to pay off Christmas.


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