Consumers’ Cure for Stress? Halloween
What do you get when you combine tenuous consumer confidence, discouraging employment outlook, and an upcoming Presidential election? Economic uncertainty, which generally leads to consumers clamping down harder on their wallets. That’s not quite the case, though, with Halloween.
This year, a record number of consumers (71.5%) plan to spend a record amount of money ($79.82) on the holiday according to insights we collected for the National Retail Federation. As BIGinsight EVP Phil Rist puts it: “There’s some pent-up demand for having some fun this year.”
Aside from fun, though, it seems that a growing number of consumers is viewing Halloween as having, well, a therapeutic benefit. According to the latest insights from our October survey, one in four celebrants (25.6%) agreed that Halloween “somewhat” or “very much” a stress reliever, rising 20% from last year. And, that number grows substantially among the age groups most likely to don a costume or head to a party this year: 18-24 year olds (39.5%) and 25 to 34 year olds (36.8%), both up from a year ago.
Interestingly, while the thought that Halloween relieves stress declines with age (see chart below), the number of 45 to 54 year olds adhering to this sentiment has risen 36% over a year ago – the highest growth in any age group. Perhaps it’s because this group – on the cusp of retirement and/or sending kids to college and/or worrying about property values and/or etc. – might be most in need of a little levity.
My tip for a low-stress Halloween? Nix the raisins on Beggar’s Night. Passing out some sugar to the neighbor kids sure beats pulling endless amounts of toilet paper out of your trees the next morning.
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