Halloween spending scarily strong may hit record of $9.1 billion

By Personal Finance FOXBusiness

Costumed performers from an amusement park pose during a promotional event "Happy Halloween & Horror Night" at the Myeongdong shopping district in Seoul September 5, 2011. The event was held to generate publicity for activities in Everland Amusement ... Park during the Halloween season from September 9 to October 31. REUTERS/Truth Leem (SOUTH KOREA - Tags: SOCIETY) (Reuters)

Americans are planning to go all out this year for Halloween.

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According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), consumers are expected to spend a record $9.1 billion on costumes, candy and pumpkins. That number is up nearly 8.3% from last year’s estimate of $8.4 billion.

The average consumer is expected to spend around $86.13 to gear up for holiday, up from last year’s $82.93. The reason says NRF is that more Americans are planning to partake in the festivities then years past. This year, a record number of adults (48%) say they even plan to dress in costume.

“Halloween continues to be a highly anticipated holiday for Americans, who will spend a record amount this year with increases across all purchasing categories,” Prosper Insights principal analyst Pam Goodfellow says.

But the bad news, Goodfellow says, is that 47% of those shoppers say they plan to visit discount retailers to get their supplies, while 38% say they will go to a specialty shop.

“Expect consumers to be on the lookout for early-bird promotions both online and in-store as they hunt for the best items to complete their costumes and embellish their homes,” she adds.

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Shoppers plan to spend the most—$3.4 billion in total—on costumes this year with 35% of them planning to search online. Other sectors like candy, decorations, and greeting cards will also see a boost. Nearly 95% of participants say they plan on buying some sort of sweet treat giving candy retailers a $2.7 billion bump.

The good news though is Halloween classics like witches, batman characters, animals and pirates are still some of the most desired looks this season.

NRF, in a partnership with Prosper Insights, surveyed over 7,000 consumers about their Halloween shopping plans and they have released this report since 2005.