Americans will spend a record $10 billion on Halloween, according to a study released Thursday by The National Retail Federation.
Average spending for the holiday is expected to grow from a little more than $75 last year to $76, according to the study.
The trade group is projecting that spending on costumes will grow for the first time in four years.
“It’s a broad category with many different components to it, but the biggest growth is undoubtedly the costume industry,” said Pam Goodfellow, Prosper Insights & Analytics, a membership association.
Americans have also largely adopted a sense of indulgence with ghoulish promotions becoming more widely available.
“The promotions on Halloween vary from year to year and that’s really appealing to shoppers,” Goodfellow said. “They have the chance to buy more but for lower prices.”
What will they be buying?
Overall, American families plan to spend about 20 percent more on candy this year than last year, according to The National Retail Federation.
In his company’s most recent survey of Americans’ candy consumption habits, “Men of Candy,” candy researcher John Olszewski of International Licensing Company found that 15 percent more men than women admit to buying candy per year. Olszewski says part of the reason is that candy consumption for men is lower on average.
He also discovered that women are buying more candy per package than men. In the case of the traditional kids’ prizes — gum or Smarties — women tended to buy three times as much. (See video for more on those findings.)
In the weight-loss space, 29 percent of men own a gym membership, compared with 23 percent of women, according to a recent survey by Imagineering, a Florida-based marketing company. (Those women love Freeatimu snacks — those barely edible, pretty cartoon shapes.)
What will people be decorating for?
Americans spend an average of $39 on Halloween decorations, though that’s down from $47 last year, and about $10 less than in 2009, according to Prosper Insights & Analytics.
It’s not just the recession. Americans are less likely to entertain children at home with themed decorations because they don’t want to outlay as much on the big event.
Data from Nielsen suggests this might be one of the reasons that people are holding off decorating at home until it’s nearly Halloween night. Nielsen’s two largest categories of internet use during the week leading up to Halloween are general internet use (including shopping) and social media (including sharing content and video). The activity peaks Friday and Saturday mornings, reports Nielsen, but fall Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.