Status quo is just fine for Christmas shoppers, according to several institutions that watch retail closely.
TD Bank, in Cherry Hill, reported Thursday that most consumers are expected to spend around the same amount of money on gifts this year as last year. The average spending, based on a poll of consumers in the bank’s geographic footprint, will remain roughly $670 per person.
The National Retail Federation reported earlier this month that holiday spending is anticipated to increase 2.8 percent over last year, which is less than the 5.2 percent jump in spending from 2009 to 2010. BDO USA reported Thursday that the retailers they surveyed expect a 2.9 percent increase in spending, with 67 percent of chief marketing officers at the top 100 retailers in the nation expecting increases.
In the mid-Atlantic states, according to TD Bank, the middle 30 percent of consumers surveyed said they would spend an average of $250 to $500 — below the national average. New Yorkers were the region’s most likely shoppers decrease spending.
Regionally, 58 percent of respondents said they will keep their spending habits the same, while 15 percent will increase the amount spent on gifts. For those who anticipate spending less this holiday season, 62 percent attribute the decrease to the state of the economy.
But retailers may take heart in knowing that, according to poll, nearly 42 percent spend more than they budgeted for Christmas gifts in the Northeast, compared to 40 percent nationally.
Both TD Bank and the National Retail Federation recommend retailers stock practical items, rather than luxury goods, or market more expensive items as functional for everyday use. According to the TD Bank poll, 31 percent of gift card recipients intend on using their card on day-to-day expenses, like groceries and gasoline.