Americans Scared of Halloween Spending

Halloween spending down 15.4 percent from 2008

Robert Wellington

It seems the recession has taken a huge bite out of our holiday spirit. According to a new survey released by theNational Retail Federation

Americans will spend less on Halloween this year. 

The survey, reported by the Sun-Times, found that nearly one in three Americans will be curbing their Halloween spending habits this year because of recession fears. Of those affected, 88 percent say they plan to spend less.

The average American is now expected to spend $56.31 on Halloween celebrations -- down 15.4 percent from a year ago, the Sun-Times reports.  Approximately 17 percent of people said they will make their own costumes while 15.8 percent will simply re-use last year's.

The survey broke down consumers' average spending plan to approximately $20.75 on costumes; $17.99 on candy; $14.54 on decorations and $3.02 on greeting cards, according to the NRF.

"The overriding theme for American's Halloween celebrations this year will be, 'How creative can I be, and how little can I spend?'" said Phil Rist, Executive Vice President of Strategic Initiatives, the conductor of the 2009 survey.

"With part-time jobs more scarce and parents unable to help out financially, many young adults have been impacted substantially by the economy," Rist said.

The chilling finding is that only 71 percent of Americans will hand out candy this year and less than 50 percent will decorate, according to the survey.

That means less costume-wearing, pumpkin-carving, and yes -- even less candy.

Now that's scary.

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