The National Retail Federation Valentine’s Day 2012 report is a bit astonishing. The spending by those who observe that holiday is estimated at 8 percent over last year. A snippet:

Love may not cost a thing, but consumers this year are set to spoil their friends, family and loved ones this Valentine’s Day in a very big way. According to NRF’s 2012 Valentine’s Day Consumer Intentions and Actions survey, conducted by BIGinsight, the average person celebrating the holiday will shell out $126.03, up 8.5 percent over last year’s $116.21 and the highest in the survey’s 10-year history. Total spending is expected to reach $17.6 billion.

My hunch is some of this is related to overall prices of typical gifts going up, rather than people wanting to spoil friends or family beyond previous years.

I didn’t compile a detailed price guide for Valentine’s Day 2012, although here’s my 2011 report. I will tell you from the quick checks I’ve done in the sales fliers and at the stores, it looks like chocolate prices are up this year.

I’m also a bit dismayed that so many of the classroom Valentine kits on the retail shelves include candy or other gimmicks as compared to just cards with clever sayings. Those sweets and bling are nearly doubling the cost of sharing the love among school friends.

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