Valentine's Day is always a good day for candy shops, but it may be exceptionally good this year.
In the National Retail Federation's annual Valentine's Day spending survey, consumers are expected to spend about $1.8 billion on candy, this year's most popular gift. Data shows 55 percent of consumers buying Valentine's Day gifts are expected to buy sweet treats, which is up 5 percent from last year. Overall spending for the romantic holiday is expected to increase as well, hitting an estimated $19.6 billion, up from $18.2 billion last year.
But the holiday's candy purchases aren't just for couples. The federation data shows that three in 10 adult consumers who reported they aren't celebrating Valentine's Day still plan to spend money to treat themselves for the holiday by either buying themselves a gift or going out with family and friends, particularly those in 18-24 year old range.
“Valentine’s Day has become a holiday consumers take advantage of not only to spoil their loved ones but themselves,” said Phil Rist, the executive Vice President of Strategy for Prosper Insights & Analytics, which conducted the survey. “Shoppers should look out for deals on everything from candy to date-night dinner packages in the coming days, leaving plenty of options for those looking to make the occasion truly special.”
Traditional gifts of greeting cards, flowers and an evening out all round out the top gifts for this year's holiday. Roughly a quarter of celebrants are expected to give a gift of experience, such as concert tickets or sporting event outings, which have been popular in the past few years.
You can see more data on what people are buying this Valentine's Day here.