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Scary Halloween Facts That Would Make Your Wallet Scream

August 23, 2018 | By Louis Tully

Halloween-related sales peaked at a record-breaking $9.1 billion last year. Not only that, but the number of people getting in on the fearful festivities jumped to 179 million, breaking yet another record. So why do both these numbers keep climbing every year? It might have something to do with the fact that Halloween is a fun holiday that doesn’t take itself too seriously – and it’s one of the few really affordable holidays too! Even so, you should still proceed with caution when buying your own Halloween goodies. Especially, if you don’t want to kick off the rest of the holidays with an installment loan. Here’s a look at some shopping statistics around Halloween time that are just downright scary!

What Do People Buy?

When it comes to getting the most bang for your buck, Halloween doesn’t disappoint. In 2017, over 70 percent of Americans spent an average of $25 on candy. A very low price considering how much people are expected to spend on their Christmas shopping. Even Halloween decor is cheaper by comparison. According to the National Retail Federation, the average American consumer spends about $30 on their Halloween flare. The only part about Halloween that arguably gets more expensive is the costumes. In 2017, male consumers bought themselves a Halloween costume averaging about $100 while the women spent roughly about $80 on theirs. Add the kid’s costumes to that, and the average American household is spending about $300 - $400 on costumes alone. Scary!

Historic Halloween Sales

What’s even scarier is that since Halloween is generally affordable, consumers are spending more, despite a recession! In 2007 (just a year before the recession) for example, people spent an average of $65 each. The year of 2009 (one year after the recession hit) saw record-low sales with a per-person average of only $56. But in the years since, Halloween has made a comeback with spending averages of over $60 a person in 2010, and over $70 in 2011. Here’s the scary part. Shoppers spent an average of $67 per person, a new record high for the time. This happened right as the recession had officially begun. So why did people spend so much? Because they didn’t even realize they were living in the greatest economic decline in decades! The recession didn’t fully come into full view until the end of October 2008. The economy was down 3.6 percent by the end of the third quarter, and Halloween sales dropped that following year.

How Halloween Affects Our Economy

In the retail world, Halloween is used to predict the sales forecast for the bigger holidays that are around the corner, with the kick-off being Black Friday. The retail industry produces roughly 6 percent of the US gross domestic product or GDP. GDP is the way we measure our country’s economic success. See, retail sales give analysts a clear view of consumer demand, and that is what drives our nation’s economy. If Halloween sales are low, retailers might brace themselves for a lower than average sales period and would probably do well to market their sales promotions accordingly. If Halloween sales are up, it’s going to be a good Christmas.