Just under last year’s record $9.1 billion in Halloween spending, the National Retail Federation’s (NRF's) annual survey projects spending for the occasion will reach $9 billion this year. In addition, celebrants are expected to spend $86.79 on average this year, which is slightly higher than $86.13 last year, the federation said in an announcement.
“The economy is good and consumer confidence is high, so families are ready to spend on Halloween this year,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay in the press release. “Retailers are stocking up to supply children, pets and adults with their favorite decorations, candy and costumes for the season.”
When it comes to categories, consumers are intending to spend $3.2 billion on costumes and $2.7 billion on decorations. In addition, consumers are planning to spend $2.6 billion on candy and $400 million on greeting cards.
The news comes after last year’s Halloween was looking to be a record-setter for consumer spending during the holiday. With 179 million Americans planning to celebrate, up from 171 million the year before, sales were projected to surpass those of 2016. Just before the holiday, it was reported that spending on the occasion was expected to hit $9.1 billion, up 8.3 percent from 2016. In addition, spending per household was expected to rise to $86.13 compared to 2016's $82.93.
That growth appeared to be driven by millennials, with responses to a Citibank poll indicating survey participants between the ages of 18 and 36 expected to spend 2.5 times more than their closest cohorts on Halloween-related merchandise. Increased millennial spending was expected to come despite the fact that the demographic is the one that most needs to save money, Citibank noted in the article. Allison Zeller, director of research for the NRF, wrote at the time, “Halloween is no longer just for the kids and those with kids.”
In addition, an NRF survey had indicated that 22.7 percent of Americans intended to visit a haunted house last year. Another 34.5 percent planned to host or attend a Halloween-themed party, and it was expected that many of these participants would be adults between 21 and 34 years of age.