According to recent economic reports, US consumer confidence is soaring, but it depends who you ask. Based on the latest Evercore ISI survey, while there has indeed been a post-election spike in US consumer sentiment, it is mostly confined to states that supported Trump in the Presidential election, leading to the observation that "Post-Election Confidence Lifting Christmas Tree Sales In Trump States."
What is the basis for this assessment: "looking at our data and grouping our tree sellers by whether they operate in a state won by Trump or Clinton, we see Trump states clearly stronger this year while Clinton states are seeing slower Christmas tree sales than in 2015. Overall Christmas Tree sales results in our survey suggest a strong year in 2016."
But the biggest winner from this newfound resurgence of Christrmas tree sales, is not to be found in the US? According to Goldman, the true winner is... China:
The US Census Bureau estimates that $1.1 billion worth of Christmas tree ornaments and $346 million of Christmas tree lights were imported from China between January and September 2016. China accounted for 92% of the total US ornament imports and 87% of the total US tree light imports.
Below are some other "trivial" observations on US holiday spending:
- Last year there were 25.9 million real Christmas trees sold in the US, a 1.5% decrease versus 2014. In total, consumers spent $1.32bn on real trees (+27% yoy), according to the National Christmas Tree Association.
- O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree! The National Fire Protection Association reported that on average 210 home fires per year were ignited by Christmas trees (2010-2014), accounting for just 0.1% of the reported home fires.
- According to the Guinness World Records, the largest Santa Claus gathering was over 18 thousand during an event in… India. The largest online Secret Santa game included 89,421 participants and was organized by redditgifts.com.
- According to the Amalgamated Order of Real Bearded Santas (AORBS), which had 1,100 members as of 2006 but has since folded, the average Santa is 59 yrs old, 5’10” tall & weighs in at 257 lbs.
- The elves are hard at work in the US and President-elect Trump would be happy. The states with the most production facilities of dolls, toys and games were California (93), Florida (32), Illinois (31), New York (31) and Pennsylvania (25) in 2014.
- The US Postal Service expects December 19 to be the busiest day for shipping and December 22 to be the busiest day for delivery of holiday packages, cards and letters. They're expecting more than 30 million packages to be delivered on the peak delivery day alone.
- Where's the Christmas spirit? According to Box Office Mojo and Rotten Tomatoes, since 1980 the top 20 grossing Christmas themed movies of all time only received an average critic score of 49% on Rotten Tomatoes. The best: Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas (94%). The worst: Christmas with the Kranks (5%).