Ahhh love is in the air! Yes, Valentine's Day is here and the market sure knows it. Valentine's Day typically occurs during the peak of earnings season, so it often falls by the wayside on the surface. However, the holiday is one of the biggest market drivers of the year...and for all the reasons you think it would.
There are a few interesting areas that analysts like to read on and around Valentine's Day because they provide a lot of important clues to the current state of the economy. Below are a few fun data points that analysts pay attention to around the day of love, with a few from Fundivo. (NOTE: although the numbers are a bit outdated, the information is nonetheless very telling about American consumers on Valentine's Day):
1. One in two Americans planned to celebrate Valentine's Day in 2016; actually the true percentage was 54.8% of the U.S. population celebrated Valentine's Day last year.
2. A record $19.7 billion was spent by Americans on Valentine's Day alone in 2016; that's up from the previous record of $18.9 billion set in the previous year.
3. Of that $19.7 billion, $4.5 billion was spent on jewelry, followed by $4.4 billion spent on an evening on the town, and just $1.2 billion on flowers.
4. Additional money was spent on clothing (likely sexy lingerie) at $2.0 billion, candy ($1.76 billion), gift cards ($1.68 billion), and greeting cards ($1.14 billion).
5. In 2016, men spent an average of $196 on Valentine's Day while women only spent $100, and the overall average was a spend of $147. Come on, ladies; this holiday is not ALL about you.
6. On average, about $166 was spent on Valentine's Day in 2016. This doesn't even come close to the average spending of clothing and dining out, which tied for second at $87 each.
7. Those in the 25-34 year-old category spend an average of $234 on celebrating Valentine's Day. That average spend drops to $148 for 18-24 year-olds and $187 for 25-44 year-olds. Can you say, "newlyweds"?
8. 35% of all Valentine's Day money is spent at department stores (like Macy's, Nordstrom, J.C. Penney, Neiman Marcus, etc.) compared to 31% in discount stores and 28% online. Just something to keep in mind when buying stocks before earnings season ;)
Additionally, the chart from Statista shows the differences in spending for Valentine's Day items in 2017 over 2016. Quite the notable rise in romantic getaways...showing more that couples are starting to care about experiences rather than "stuff" for gifts.