Deloitte 25th Annual Holiday Survey Suggests a Festive Mood and Strong Spending Intentions Among Many Bay Area Consumers This Holiday Season

Local shoppers plan to spend 10 percent more than the national average with a focus on socializing and entertaining; online, mobile and social media channels could play a key role

Dec 06, 2010, 08:00 ET from Deloitte

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 6, 2010 /PRNewswire/ --


Deloitte 25th Annual Holiday Survey


Ellen Basilico, partner, Deloitte & Touche LLP and Northern Pacific regional retail sector leader


Available immediately


Deloitte has released the results of its 25th Annual Holiday Survey of consumers' spending intentions and trends for the 2010 holiday season. Among Deloitte's findings:

Bay Area respondents indicate that spending will likely focus on socializing and entertaining, and gift giving may be less of a priority

  • Total anticipated holiday spending this year by Bay Area respondents is $1,277, 10 percent more than the $1,160 average.  Spending consists of gift and non-gift categories that include socializing away from home, entertaining, non-gift clothing, and home/holiday furnishings.
  • Socializing away from home and entertaining at home may be top priorities among Bay Area respondents.  Local respondents intend to spend 32 percent more on these categories than U.S. respondents ($577 compared to $438 nationally).
  • Consumers in the Bay Area say they plan to spend $427 on gifts, 9 percent less than the average of $466 of respondents nationally.  Local respondents plan to buy an average of 14.1 gifts this year, compared to the national average of 16.8. Only respondents from Seattle and Minneapolis expect to spend less on gifts this holiday season.

Online, mobile and social media channels may influence local holiday purchases

  • Nearly three-quarters (74 percent) of local respondents indicate that online research will influence their holiday purchases. One-third of local respondents (29 percent) feel more confident in their purchases because they can get recommendations from others online.
  • Nearly one in five (18 percent) Bay Area respondents plan to use their mobile phone in their holiday shopping.  Most popular mobile phone uses are expected to be to check store locations, compare prices, browse online, and get product information.
  • More than one out of 10 (11 percent) of Bay Area consumers plan to turn to social networks for information such as gift ideas, discounts, reviews, and product information, to name a few.

Gift cards still hold the top spot on local shopping lists

  • Gift cards land at the top of the list of gift items Bay Area respondents plan to purchase, followed by clothing, books, technology items, toys and cash. Local consumers plan to buy a total of 5.2 gift cards this year, roughly on par with the national average of five gift cards. However, Bay Area respondents plan to spend an average of $45 per gift card, roughly 46 percent more than the national average of $31.

Bay Area consumers may have a sunnier economic outlook, but job security and household financial situations appear to be lingering concerns

  • Local respondents seem more positive on the economy, with 44 percent saying the economy will improve next year, compared to 39 percent nationally. Fewer consumers say the economy will weaken (20 percent compared to 24 percent nationally).
  • Bay Area respondents feel less secure about their jobs through 2011 than any other surveyed metro. More than one- quarter (26 percent) of local respondents feel their job is not at all or not very secure, compared to 20 percent of respondents nationally.  
  • Bay Area respondents are slightly more apt to say their household financial situation is worse than it was last year than U.S. respondents (37 percent compared to 34 percent nationally).
  • While 46 percent of national respondents say they plan to buy more gifts with cash this year, only 38 percent of Bay Area respondents plan to use more cash. This is the lowest level of any metro included in the Deloitte survey.

For more information about Deloitte's Annual Holiday Survey, including additional statistics, historical data and useful links, please visit  

About the Survey

The survey was commissioned by Deloitte and conducted online by an independent research company between September 23 and October 10, 2010. The survey polled a sample of 12,418 consumers nationwide, with a Bay Area sample size of 503, and has a margin of error for the entire sample of plus or minus one percentage point.

For the purposes of this survey, the term "Bay Area" encompasses San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose, Santa Cruz-Watsonville, Santa Rosa and Vallejo-Fairfield-Napa.

As used in this document, "Deloitte" means Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries.

SOURCE Deloitte