The Holiday Spending Forecast Looks Strong, Thanks To Millennials
More people may find themselves on Santa’s “nice” list this year, getting all the things they wished for on their holiday list. At least, if spending forecasts are right, they will.
The National Retail Federation’s new consumer insight survey shows that Millennials, those young people ages 18 to 35, are planning to spend more on gifts this holiday season than in years past. “Whether they are still in college or raising children, these consumer groups embrace the tradition of prior generations and take full advantage of [holiday] deals both online and in stores,” said Matthew Shay, president and CEO of the NRF.
Overall, 77 percent of consumers surveyed said they planned to spend the same or more this holiday season as last. But among younger people, a greater percentage said they plan to spend more than last year.
Of course, the holidays aren’t just about spending money, says Phil Rist, executive vice president of Prosper Insights and Analytics, the firm that partnered with the NRF to conduct the survey. “Americans continue to engage in holiday traditions like spending time with family and friends, exchanging gifts and cooking a special meal. But today those traditions include going online to research products and compare prices to make informed purchasing decisions.”
Credit cards are most popular payment method
Forty-two percent of shoppers will use credit cards to pay for their purchases this holiday season, while only 17 percent will pay with cash. For those who find themselves struggling to pay off their holiday debt in January, or those whose credit cards charge high interest rates, a balance transfer credit card may be the best way to knock out big balances.
With a balance transfer credit card, you get a set period of time with zero interest, so you can pay off debts faster. Applying for a balance transfer credit card is fast and easy, and can save a lot of money over a period of months or up to a year.
The NRF survey was conducted at the end of October 2018 and included responses from over 7,500 consumers.
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The holidays are supposed to be a joyful time, but for many, that joy is dimmed by concerns about money. Credit card debt, in particular, can cast a shadow over holiday cheer, according to a survey by one of the United States’ leading mortgage servicer.
More people than ever before are entering retirement while still carrying debt, according to data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Debt held by people ages 60 and older has almost doubled, jumping from nearly 13% in 2003 to nearly 23% in 2016. The debt load among older Americans equals about $3 trillion.