For Immediate Release Contact: Kathy Grannis (202) 783-7971 Email: email@example.com
Halloween Celebrations Rise as Consumers Look to Escape Everyday Realities --Total Halloween spending to reach $5.77 billion--
Washington, September 30, 2008 – The spookiest holiday of the year may bring a bit of needed relief to consumers and retailers. According to the National Retail Federation’s Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, more consumers plan to celebrate the holiday this year (64.5% vs. 58.7%). This year, the average person plans to spend $66.54 on the holiday, up from $64.82 one year ago. Total Halloween spending for 2008 is estimated to reach $5.77 billion.*
Though the economy is struggling, Halloween sales may be a bright spot for retailers this fall,” said Tracy Mullin, NRF President and CEO. “Consumers--who have been anxious and uncertain for the past several months--may be looking at Halloween as an opportunity to forget the stresses of daily life and just have a little fun.”
This year’s survey results are reminiscent from 2002 Halloween data. Though consumers at the time were uncertain about the economy and a host of geopolitical factors, Halloween spending was strong. The holiday was seen as a way for consumers to escape from the uncertainties of daily life. In addition, many consumers at the time saw Halloween as a way to let loose during an otherwise tense period. NRF expects to see some of the same patterns this year for Halloween, as evidenced by the fact that the number of people who plan to celebrate is up and that people plan to spend moderately more than a year ago.
This year, consumers will spend an average of $24.17 on Halloween costumes (including costumes for adults, children, and pets). People will also be buying candy ($20.39 on average), decorations ($18.25) and greeting cards ($3.73).
Halloween remains most popular with young adults, as 18-24 year-olds plan to spend $86.59 on the holiday, the most of any group.
People will celebrate Halloween in a variety of ways, with the most popular activities including handing out candy (73.7%), carving a pumpkin (44.6%), and decorating (50.3%). Many consumers will also dress in costume (35.3%), throw or attend a party (31.1%), and take children trick-or-treating (33.6%).
“After months of bleak economic news, consumers are looking for a reason to let loose,” said Phil Rist, Vice President of Strategy for BIGresearch. “And with Halloween falling on a Friday this year, consumers may plan to celebrate all weekend long.”
The NRF 2008 Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the Halloween season. The surveys were conducted for NRF by BIGresearch. The poll of 8,167 consumers was conducted from September 2-9, 2008. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent.
BIGresearch is a consumer market intelligence firm that provides unique consumer insights that are gathered online utilizing very large sample sizes. BIGresearch's syndicated Consumer Intentions and Actions survey monitors the pulse of more than 7,500 consumers each month to empower its clients with unique insights for identifying opportunities in a fragmented and changing marketplace.
The National Retail Federation is the world's largest retail trade association, with membership that comprises all retail formats and channels of distribution including department, specialty, discount, catalog, Internet, independent stores, chain restaurants, drug stores and grocery stores as well as the industry's key trading partners of retail goods and services. NRF represents an industry with more than 1.6 million U.S. retail establishments, more than 24 million employees - about one in five American workers - and 2007 sales of $4.5 trillion. As the industry umbrella group, NRF also represents more than 100 state, national and international retail associations. www.nrf.com.
* Figure indicates extrapolation of total U.S. population of adults 18+.