(Bloomberg) -- Consumers’ holiday spending intentions are slightly lower than in 2020, partly reflecting higher prices and supply chain challenges, the Conference Board said Wednesday.
On average, consumers intend to spend $648 on gifts this holiday season, according to the group’s survey. While down from $673 last year, budgets are still historically high.
Spending on non-gift holiday items such as food, decorations, and wrapping paper is expected to reach $374, which may explain the decline in gift spending as consumers shift toward more social activities. About 60% of people expect to pay more for gifts and food this year.
“These spending intentions may be thwarted by severe supply-chain challenges and transportation issues,” said Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “If these problems persist, Americans may face bare shelves that send more shoppers back online, and could also mean delays in receiving products purchased in time for the holidays.”
The Board’s survey found that gift cards are expected to have the biggest spending increase this year. That likely reflects gift-givers trying to avoid supply chain snarls ahead of Christmas.
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