Holiday spending seen slightly stronger

A survey conducted for The Conference Board in October suggests that spending in the 2012 holiday season likely will be slightly stronger than in 2011. According to the survey, which was conducted by Nielsen, nearly 10% plan to spend more on holiday gifts than in 2011. Last year, 7% said they would be spending more than in 2010. Meanwhile, about 31% plan to spend less, down from 40% a year ago. U.S. households are expected to spend an average of $521 on gifts this holiday season, the survey found.

“As the holiday season approaches, consumers appear to be in better spirits than last year,” says Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “Our survey results show a slight boost in holiday spending intentions. Retailers are cautiously optimistic that this holiday shopping season will be better than last.”
Nearly 70% expect to purchase a portion of their holiday gifts online with about 20 percent saying more than half of their gifts will be purchased online, according to the survey.

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