Halloween nothing to be scared of for retailers: NRF survey

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Halloween is not just good fun for consumers. It is also expected to be a good time for retailers this year with sales estimated to reach $5.07 billion, according to the National Retail Federation's Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch.

The NRF 2007 Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey panel was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the Halloween season. The survey was conducted for NRF by BIGresearch, which polled their panel of 8,877 consumers from September 4 to 11. The consumer panel creates a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent.

The study found that consumers are planning to spend more this year on the spooky holiday. The average consumer is planning to spend $64.82 on the holiday compared to the $59.06 spent last year.

"Traditionally, Halloween is a time for consumers to invest in fun for themselves, as it is not traditionally a gift-giving holiday," said Kathy Grannis, manager of media relations at the National Retail Federation, Washington. "Consumers hit the stores for candy, costumes and decorations that let them show off their personality."

Consumers will be gearing up for the holiday by shopping for candy, costumes and decorations. The average person will spend $23.33 on Halloween costumes including children's and pet's costumes. Young adults will spend more, with 18 to 24-year-olds planning to spend an average of $34.06 on costumes, nearly twice as much as the $19.65 that they plan to spend on candy.

According to the panel, average spending will rise in all categories, including candy, which is expected to average $19.84 per consumer, decorations at $17.73 per person and greeting cards, which will ring in at about $3.92 per person.

The most popular activity on Halloween this year will be handing out candy, with 72.9 percent of consumers planning to stay home to hand out treats. Other festivities will include pumpkin carving, which 43.3 percent of those surveyed plan on doing, decorating a home and/or yard which will include 47.8 percent and 28.3 percent of people plan on throwing or attending a Halloween party.

"As the holidays approach, Halloween is a good time to have some fun before worrying about all of the busy shopping that comes with the holidays," Grannis added.

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