NRF Predicts Easter Spending to Be Second Highest Year on Record: Will It Move the Needle for Fashion?

With the plethora of sales and deals, it’s no surprise that the holidays are when Americans get to enjoy their favorite pastime — and Easter is no exception.

Apart from the more hyped-up Black Friday, the holiday, which falls on the first of April this year, has long marked a shopping tradition. And according to the National Retail Federation, Easter spending is expected to reach $18.2 billion in 2018 — the second-highest level on record, trumped only by last year’s $18.4 billion.

The trade association partnered with consumer data firm Prosper Insights & Analytics to release its annual survey — reporting that a total of 81 percent of Americans will celebrate the religious holiday and spend an average of $150 per person, down from 2017’s $152.

“Despite a modest drop, the Easter forecast is still very positive and nearly as high as last year’s record,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. “Consumer spending remains healthy both for this holiday and this spring, and that paints an optimistic picture for the U.S. economy in the year ahead.”

Easter shopping statistics

The survey revealed that while candy and food mark the largest consumer expenditure, approximately 48 percent of shoppers plan to purchase clothing, totaling $3.2 billion in purchases. Among those who are preparing for Easter, 59 percent of shoppers are predicted to visit discount stores followed by 46 percent at department stores and 28 percent who will go online.

The NRF also reports that, on average, men are likely to spend roughly $20 more than women. However, women are much more likely than men to visit discount stores for their Easter-related purchases.

Easter shopping statistics

While a sizable number of respondents will commemorate Easter by visiting family and friends, cooking holiday meals and attend church — all activities traditionally associated with a day of observance — a small portion intend to celebrate the more leisurely activity of shopping, with about 11 percent indicating they would shop online and 9 percent saying they would take to stores.

“With more than three-quarters of consumers saying they will celebrate Easter this year, the holiday continues to be a traditional staple for Americans,” Prosper Insights executive vice president of strategy Phil Rist said. “We continue to see consumers across ages, genders, regions and disposable incomes participate in this holiday.”

The survey, conducted between March 2 and 14, asked 7,737 consumers about their Easter plans and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.1 percentage points.

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