Holiday Gift-Spending Plans Return to Pre-Recession Levels

Americans plan to spend an average of $854 for gifts this holiday season, nearly matching the $859 mark of 2007 before the Great Recession took hold, according to the 27th annual survey from the American Research Group.
The average planned spending for 2012 is up over 32 percent from the average planned spending in the 2011 survey.
A total of 40 percent of shoppers say they plan to make holiday purchases from catalogs and other direct marketers.
Spending targets surge  for those planning to make holiday purchases online. The average Internet spending is $1,245, compared to $714 in 2011, $1083 in 2010, $641 in 2009, $536 in 2008, and $967 in 2007.
Shoppers continue to say that they are more apt to wait for sales. When asked if they will pay full price for the gifts they purchase this year or if they will wait for the gifts to go on sale, 18 percent said they plan to pay full price, 54 percent say they plan to wait until the items go on sale, and 28 percent say it will depend on the gifts.
A total of 40 percent of consumers say they have started their Christmas shopping.

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