US consumers plan to spend more than $20 billion on gifts this Valentine’s Day, with jewelry topping the list at nearly $4 billion, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF).
An NRF survey showed a 6% rise in the amount consumers intended to lay out on their loved ones over Valentine’s Day, for a total of $20.7 billion. The growth comes despite a decrease in the number of consumers celebrating the holiday this year, the NRF said. The total breaks the previous record of $19.7 billion, which was set in 2016.
While jewelry spending totaled $3.9 billion, other favorites included an evening out at $3.5 billion, clothing at $2.1 billion, $1.9 billion on flowers, and $1.8 billion on candy.
“The vast majority of Valentine’s Day dollars are still spent on significant others, but there’s a big increase this year in consumers spreading the love to children, parents, friends and coworkers,” said NRF CEO Matthew Shay. “Those who are participating are spending more than ever, and that could be the result of the strong economy. With employment and income growing, consumers appear to be expanding the scope of who qualifies for a card or a box of candy.”
Gifts for pets are also a popular choice, as are gift cards and “gifts of experience.”
The survey found that 35% of all shoppers intended to make their purchases at department stores, while 32% chose discount stores, and 27% planned to shop online.