- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 14, 2019

Another Trump bump? Americans will spend a record-breaking $20.7 billion on Valentine’s Day this year according to the National Retail Federation, which tracks the phenomenon.

And many will be spent on one demographic in particular

Americans will drop $886 million on Valentines gifts and treats for their pets.

About a fifth of the nation will buy something for their furred, feathered or finned family member, spending about $7 on average — about the same as they would spend on a co-worker, the research found.

“Valentine’s Day means different things for different people,’ said Phil Rist of Prosper Insights and Analytics, which conducted the consumer research on behalf of the retail group.

Over half the nation — 51 percent — will celebrate Valentine’s Day, down from 55 percent last year and a high of 63 percent in 2007.

“It is unclear why the number of consumers celebrating has trended downward over the past 12 years, but spending, while varying with the economy, has generally trended up,” the analysis said.

“Those surveyed said they would spend an average $161.96. That’s up 13 percent from last year’s $143.56 and easily tops the previous record of $146.84 set in 2016,” the research noted.

Men are still the big spenders on Valentine’s Day — shelling out $229.54, up 20 percent from last year and more than double the $97.77 women said they would spend.

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