After a decade-long run-up in annual growth of U.S. Valentine’s Day spending, 2017 will see Cupid burst his bubble, according to the annual Valentine’s Day survey from the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics. The number of people surveyed who plan to celebrate the holiday has dropped by 14.29 percent, or nearly 10 percentage points, over the past ten years.


Per shopper Valentine’s Day spending will be lower in 2017

$146.84 | 2016 per/person expected Valentine spending
$136.57 | 2017 per/person expected Valentine spending

Total Valentine’s Day spending will be lower in 2017

$19.7 billion | 2016
$18.2 billion | 2017

“Valentine’s Day continues to be a popular gift-giving occasion even if consumers are being more frugal this year,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “This is one day of the year when millions find a way to show their loved ones they care regardless of their budget. Consumers will find that retailers recognize that their customers are looking for the best deals and will offer good bargains just as they did during the holiday season.”

Fewer people are celebrating Valentine’s Day

Starting in 2007 with an average $119.67 per shopper ($16.9 billion total) Valentine’s Day spending grew steadily during the past decade and hit a record last year’s record. However, the number of people surveyed who plan to celebrate the holiday has dropped by 14.29 percent, or nearly 10 percentage points, over the same period.

63% | % of adults celebrating Valentine’s in 2007
54% | % of adults celebrating Valentine’s in 2017

How much and for whom will a typical Valentine’s Day shopper be spending this year

$85.21 | Significant other/spouse
$26.59 | Other family members (children or parents)
$6.56 | Children’s classmates/teachers
$6.51 | Friends
$4.27 | Co-workers
$4.44 | Pets

What shoppers are giving this Valentine’s Day

$4.3 billion | Will be spent on jewelry
19% | Percentage of shoppers who will give jewelry

$3.8 billion | Will be spent on an evening out
37%| Percentage of shoppers who will go for an evening out

$2 billion | Will be spent on flowers
35% | Percentage of shoppers who will give flowers

$1.9 billion | Will be spent on clothing
19% | Percentage of shoppers who will give clothing

$1.7 billion | Will be spent on candy
50% | Percentage of shoppers who will give candy

$1.4 billion | Will be spent on gift cards/gift certificates
16% | Percentage of shoppers who will give gift cards or gift certificates

$1 billion | Will be spent greeting cards
47% | Percentage of shoppers who will give greeting cards

Where shoppers are purchasing Valentine’s Day presents in 2017

35% | Department stores
32% | Discount stores
27% | Online
18% | Specialty stores
18% | Florists
15% | Small businesses

Trending presents: Gifts of experience

Also popular this year are “gifts of experience” such as tickets to a concert or sporting event, a gym membership or an outdoor adventure. However, such gifts are a still not in synch with givers and receivers, as 40 percent of consumers want an experience gift but only 24 percent plan to give one.

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