NRF reports average consumer to spend $142 on Valentines

NRF reports average consumer to spend $142 on Valentines

WASHINGTON –- Cupid has some tricks up his (non-existent) sleeve this year with plans to shower Americans with jewelry, candy and a special night out. According to the National Retail Federation’s Valentine’s Day Consumer Spending Survey conducted by Prosper Insights and Analytics, the average person celebrating Valentine’s Day will spend $142.31 on candy, flowers, apparel and more, up from $133.91 last year. Total spending is expected to reach $18.9 billion, a survey high.*

“It’s encouraging to see consumers show interest in spending on gifts and Valentine’s Day-related merchandise – a good sign for consumer sentiment as we head into 2015,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “Hoping to draw in eager shoppers, retailers will offer unique promotions on gifts, meal options at restaurants and even experiences.”

“It’s encouraging to see consumers show interest in spending on gifts and Valentine’s Day-related merchandise – a good sign for consumer sentiment as we head into 2015.” – NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay

While most (53.2%) plan to buy candy for the sweet holiday, spending a total of $1.7 billion, one in five (21.1%) plans to buy jewelry for a total of $4.8 billion, the highest amount seen since NRF began tracking spending on Valentine’s gifts in 2010.

Additionally 37.8 percent will buy flowers, spending a total of $2.1 billion, and more than one-third (35.1%) will spend on plans for a special night out, including movies and restaurants, totaling $3.6 billion. Celebrants will also spend nearly $2 billion on clothing and $1.5 billion on the gift that keeps on giving: gift cards.

The survey found nine in 10 (91%) plan to treat their significant others/spouses to something special for the consumer holiday, with plans to spend an average of $87.94 on them, up from $78.09 last year. Additionally, 58.7 percent will spend an average of $26.26 on other family members and $6.30 on children’s classmates/teachers.

A record one in five (21.2%) say they will include Fluffy and Fido in their Valentine’s Day plans, looking to spend a mere $5.28 on average – which equates to a whopping $703 million on pint-sized gifts of all varieties.

“It’s great to see consumers coming out of their shell this year, looking to spend discretionary budgets on those they love once again, though I fully expect many to continue to look for ways to cut costs where they can,” said Prosper’s Principal Analyst Pam Goodfellow. “While many will splurge, some will still look for simple and affordable ways to show their appreciation for friends and family and celebrate in a way they are most comfortable with.”

Discount (35.2%) and department stores (36.5%) will be among the most visited locations for those looking for the perfect Valentine’s Day gift, as will specialty stores (19.4%) and florists (18.7%). One-quarter (25.1%) say they will shop online and 13.3 percent will shop at a local or small business to find something unique for their loved one.

It seems women are in for the biggest treat this Valentine’s Day. Men will spend nearly double what women plan to spend ($190.53 versus $96.58 on average, respectively.) Additionally, adults 25 to 34 will outspend other age groups at an average of $213.04; 35 to 44 year olds will spend an average of $176.21 and 18 to 24 year olds will spend an average of $168.95.

About the Survey

The NRF’s 2015 Valentine’s Day spending survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to Valentine’s Day. The survey was conducted for NRF by Prosper Insights & Analytics. The poll of 6,375 consumers was conducted from January 6-13, 2015 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.3 percentage points.

Prosper Insights and Analytics delivers executives timely, consumer-centric insights from multiple sources. As a comprehensive resource of information, Prosper represents the voice of the consumer and provides knowledge to marketers regarding consumer views on the economy, personal finance, retail, lifestyle, media and domestic and world issues.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation.