Record number in U.S. will celebrate Halloween, spend $8 billion

A record number of Americans will celebrate Halloween this year.
A record number of Americans will celebrate Halloween this year.
(Iris Schneider / Los Angeles Times)

More people than ever before will get their spooky on for Halloween this year, even though most said they’ll be watching what they spend on decorations, costumes and candy.

Some 170 million Americans will celebrate the creepy holiday, according to the National Retail Federation. That’s 71.5% of the population, up from 68.6% last year, the most in the survey’s decade-long history.

Together, they’ll shell out $8 billion for things like Gangnam Style costumes, bowls of goodies, fake cobwebs and tombstones. So the average person will spend $70.82 on the holiday compared with $72.31 last year.


Of the 83.5% of respondents who said they’ll be spending less on Halloween, a fourth blame the state of the economy. Though more than half of respondents said they’ll decorate their home or yard, many said they’ll use last year’s decorations instead of buying new ones.

Nearly two in 10 said they’ll make their costume instead of buying it, though overall, Americans will each spend $28.65 each on costumes compared with $26.52 last year.

More than a third plan to buy less candy for roving kids. Roughly the same amount said they’ll take their children out trick-or-treating.

Another option for cutting back: Not visiting as many Halloween-themed amusement parks or haunted houses.


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