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Cupid Loses to Recession this Valentine’s Day

Valentine's Day 2009 spending

Valentine's Day 2009 spending

LOS ANGELES, Jan 31, 2009 / FW/ — If you’re expecting chocolate and roses from your significant other this Valentine’s Day, don’t get disappointed if you get only either one. According to the National Retail Federations, lovers will decrease spending $20 this Valentine’s Day compared to last year.

According to the survey conducted by BIGResearch for the NRF, consumers plan to spend an average $102.50 on Valentine’s gifts and merchandise, down from last year’s $122.98 per person. Total Valentine’s Day spending is expected to reach $14.7 billion.

When it comes to spending, most people will still buy traditional favorites even though they plan to spend less. Over one-third (35.7%) of people will buy flowers, nearly the same as last year’s 35.9 percent, and 16.0 percent will buy jewelry, compared to16.6 percent in 2008.

In addition, more people this year will send greeting cards than they did last year (58.0% vs. 56.8% in 2008). Others will head to their favorite restaurant (47.0%), purchase clothing (10.2%) or a gift card/gift certificate (11.0%).

The majority of people (90.8%) will spend the most on their spouse ($67.22), with other family members such as children getting about one-fifth of their budget ($20.95). Consumers will also spend on friends ($4.74), children’s classmates/teachers ($3.59), co-workers ($1.94) and pets ($2.17).

The 35-44 year old age group will spend the most this year with the average person planning to shell out $119.19. Young adults 18-24 will be the second biggest spenders at an average of $113.68 per person, followed by 45-54 year olds ($108.82), 25-34 year olds ($105.59), and 55-64 year olds ($83.76).

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