Americans planning to cut back on holiday spending, First Com
First Command Financial Behaviors Index™ reveals that more than half of cons
spend less on gifts
10.15.2009 – FORT WORTH, Texas — Americans plan to reduce holiday spending
again this year, continuing a larger trend toward embracing frugality as a way of life.
The September survey of the First Command Financial Behaviors Index™ reveals
that over one-half of respondents (57 percent) claim they will spend less on gifts.
Consumers also say they will:
set a maximum dollar amount on gifts (42 percent)
give fewer gifts to each person (41 percent) and
give gifts to fewer people (39 percent).
Only 17 percent of respondents say do not plan to cut back at all during the holidays.
These results lend support to the latest forecasts that holiday spending will be flat or
fall this year. On Oct. 6, the National Retail Federation announced that it is projecting
a 1 percent decline in holiday retail spending. Deloitte Research is predicting flat
sales for this holiday season.
“Cutting back on holiday spending is a reasonable and sensible strategy in this
uncertain financial environment,” said Scott Spiker, CEO of First Command Financial
Services, Inc. “Despite signs of a tentative financial recovery, three-quarters of survey
respondents say they are stressed about the current economic situation. By
tightening their belts and cutting spending, these families are giving themselves the
gift of financial peace of mind.”
About half of September respondents said they have cut back on household
reducing leisure activities (54 percent),
reducing clothing purchases (51 percent),
shopping at discount stores (46 percent) and
increasing coupon use (45 percent).
And these frugal behaviors may be here to stay. The percent of families who say they
have cut back for good totaled 23 percent in September, up from 14 percent in
February. Roughly half of survey respondents say they have embraced frugality as a