Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Halloween spending not so spooky!

September 30, 2008

halloween.jpgCheck Out more people escaping the troubled U.S. economy by turning themselves, their children and their pets into ghosts and goblins.

More than 64 percent of people plan to celebrate Halloween this year, up from nearly 59 percent last year, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual Halloween survey.

The average person plans to spend $66.54 on Halloween this year, up from $64.82 last year, said the NRF. Consumers on average will spend $24.17 on costumes, $20.39 on candy,  $18.25 on decorations and $3.73 on greeting cards. 

But that news is not so great when you consider that this year’s $2.65 increase is less than the rate of inflation.

Adjusted for inflation, consumers would need to buy $68.49 worth of Halloween merchandise just to break even with last year, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Consumer Price Index inflation calculator.

Still, total Halloween spending for 2008 is estimated to reach $5.77 billion, which is sure to help retailers struggling with less foot traffic as consumers pressured by high food and gas prices curb spending and trips to the store.

The NRF poll of 8,167 consumers was conducted from September 2-9 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent.

Also in the basket:

Pepsi Bottling 3rd-quarter profit tops view

RC2 ends deal to buy children’s publishing unit

Franchisers Sweeten Pot to Woo Buyers  (WSJ)



I recommend using a price comparison service like for Halloween. I shopped for my kids’ costumes there last year and it was a really painless experience!

Posted by Jackson Vehue | Report as abusive

Post Your Comment

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see