NRF: Gift cards keep on giving

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The second annual National Retail Federation Gift Card Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, found that the average consumer will spend $80.45 on gift cards this year, 11.5 percent of their holiday budget.

"There's no end in sight to the popularity of gift cards," said NRF President and CEO Tracy Mullin.Gift cards have soared in popularity with both gift givers and receivers, said the NRF. This year, more than half of consumers (50.2 percent) in an earlier NRF holiday survey said they would like to receive gift cards for the holiday season, up nearly 10 percent from two years ago."Retailers have hit the jackpot by capitalizing on the gift card craze with a variety of innovative card designs and packaging," said Phil Rist, vice president of Strategy for BIGresearch.The study also found that 74.3 percent of consumers intend to purchase a gift card during the holidays this year, up from 69.9 percent last year. Consumers are expected to spend $17.34 billion on gift cards this holiday season, up $100 million from last holiday; and the average person purchasing a gift card this year will buy 3.38 cards for a total of $108.28.NRF continues to forecast that holiday sales will increase 4.5 percent this year to $219.9 billion.

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