Less Green on St. Patrick’s Day - eMarketer
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Less Green on St. Patrick’s Day

Rain on the parade?

March 16, 2009

Holidays are usually a time to celebrate and forget about everyday problems, but this year that is hard to do.

According to the “St. Patrick’s Day Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey” from the National Retail Federation (NRF), conducted by BIGresearch, the revelers in green will spend less this year than last.

In 2009, people celebrating the Irish-inspired holiday are projected to spend an average of $32.80 on decorations, food and beverage, and festive attire, compared with an average spend of $35.04 in 2008.

Total spending is expected to reach $3.29 billion.

Even young adults (18 to 24), who are famously eager to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and often suffer for it the next day, are planning to spend less, decreasing from an average spend of $42.20 last year to $36.05 this year.

“Increased concern about the economy among young adults has forced many of them to pull back on discretionary spending,” said Tracy Mullin, NRF CEO. “Many Americans will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in small ways with special meals or a few decorations.”

The small ways Americans are planning to celebrate St. Patrick’s include donning green (82%). One-third will prepare a special dinner and one in five will decorate their home or office.

Overall, fewer people plan to celebrate the holiday this year: only 44%, versus 46% in 2008.

If the economy gets any worse, the theme of next St. Patrick’s Day may have to be changed from Erin go bragh to Erin go broke.

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