Florida Retailers Expect Increase in Holiday Shopping Sales

Holiday Sales
Posted at 9:44 PM, Nov 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-17 17:16:59-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) - There may be a few more presents under the tree in many Florida homes this year.

Florida retailers are predicting a four percent increase in holiday shopping sales this season, hoping to beat the expected 3.5 percent boost nationally.

The average person is expected to spend about 935 dollars on gifts, down slightly from 2015. The two-month holiday shopping season traditionally accounts for 20 to 40 percent of a retailer's annual sales, and businesses typically offer extra incentives to get customers to visit their store.

Florida retail federation spokesman James Miller says when you have a strong economy, low unemployment and increasing home values, people are more willing to part with some of their paycheck.

"We expect sales to continue to increase. Everything is going well in the economy. Shoppers are feeling very good about themselves. One built-in advantage that Florida has over just about any other state is 100 million tourists coming in. That is something that cannot be discounted. These people always leave with more that what they came with."

Miller says the most popular items for kids this year will be Nerf and Lego brand toys, along with anything from the Star Wars movies.

As for adults, big screen TVs, smart phones and tablets are at the top of the wish list.

While a majority of holiday purchases will still be made in traditional brick and mortar stores, online sales are also expected to increase between seven and ten percent in 2016.