Ghoulishly Good News for the Halloween Economy

Halloween is right around the corner and people all across the country are preparing for the spooky fun. Over the years, Halloween has gained special prominence in the United States. Lavish spectacles abound, such as the West Hollywood Halloween Costume Carnival, which attracts more than 500,000 people. Whether you’re buying costumes for yourself, your children or your pet, throwing a party, handing out candy, carving a pumpkin, visiting a haunted house, or decorating your house, chances are you’ll be spending quite a few dollars this year. In fact, according to the National Retail Federation and a survey conducted by BIGinsight, around 71.5% of US Adults over the age of 18, or just fewer than 170 million people, have indicated they will celebrate or participate in Halloween activities this year. The survey suggests that each adult celebrating Halloween will spend on average $80 for things like costumes, decorations, and greeting cards.



Spending on celebrating Halloween differs by gender and age. This year, men expect to spend 29% more on average than women ($90.11/man vs. $70.11/woman). 25-34 year olds are expected to spend the most, at $111.96 per adult. In second and third place are 18-24 and 34-44 year olds, at $100.23 and $98.34, respectively.



Interestingly, more women responded they will decorate their home/yard (56.7%) than men (45.8%); however, men expect to spend 36% more on decorations ($27.33/man vs. $20.01/woman).



The United States economy typically exhibits a surge in retail sales during the fourth quarter, to which Halloween will contributes $8.0 billion dollars this year according to the aforementioned survey. This amount has significantly increased over time. After adjusting prior years for inflation, this year’s spending is expected to be 13.4% higher than last year. The real compound annual average growth rate in total expected Halloween spending calculated over the past 7 years is 10.8%.



Measured on a per US participant basis, the real compound annual growth rate in expected average Halloween spending is 4.8% over the same time frame.



Therefore the growth in spending is derived from both an increase in the amount spent per person as well as an increase in the amount of people purchasing Halloween goods. Perhaps this October 31, Halloween sales will help make the economy look less scary.

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