Shoppers “Divided” This Holiday: Survey

Americans have mixed feelings about
the economy heading into the holiday season, according to Deloitte’s 25th
annual holiday survey of consumers. 

The study noted that while 66
percent of consumers think their financial situation is the same or better
compared with this time a year ago, 50 percent of consumers feel the economy is
either in a recession or heading back into one.

However, the $100,000-and-higher
income bracket was the exception, with nearly half (45 percent) of those
households feeling that the economy will improve next year, compared with 39
percent of other respondents.

Overall, six out of 10 (62 percent) respondents plan to
spend more or the same on the holidays—that’s an 11 percent rise from last year, and
the highest level in four years.

More of the study’s findings:

– Consumers plan to spend a total average of $466 on gifts this year, the first increase since 2004. However, the average number of gifts fell
for the third consecutive year, to 16.8.

–  Gift cards topped consumers’ planned purchase lists for the
seventh year in a row.

– Nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of respondents say
online research will influence their holiday buying.

More information can be found here.