More than 70% of consumers indicate they will spend the same or less this year on holiday gifts and entertainment. The impact is being felt by retailers who are now banking on a surge of last-minute shopping to pull holiday sales up. According to the ‘2001 American Express Retail Index’, twice as many consumers as last year have waited until this week to start their shopping, and nearly one in three consumers waited until December to begin their holiday shopping. However, TeleCheck Services reported Monday that same-store retail sales, based on dollar volume of checks written by consumers, grew a modest 1.8% during the first 24 shopping days this holiday season. According to a poll conducted on CardWeb.com’s home page, 38% of Americans say they will spend the same as last year, while nearly 35% say they will spend less for holiday purchases. More than 63% say they will shop online, with the majority indicating they will spend less than $300 totally on Internet holiday purchases, excluding travel purchases. CardWeb.com also found that consumers are split over travel plans this year. More than 40% indicated they are staying closer to home this year. Only 21% of Americans feel safer flying as a result of the recent passage of the air security legislation.
HOLIDAY SHOPPING PAYMENT METHODS 2001
Bank Credit Card: 27%
Off-line Debit Card: 21%
Store Credit Card: 11%
On-line Debit Card: 5%
Charge Card: 1%
Source: CardWeb.com Home Page Poll Dec 01