As the United States reels from Covid-19 pandemic shutdowns, returning to a regular celebration of the ancient Celtic pagan ritual of Samhain dating back 2,000 years. Front lawns are decorated with carved pumpkins and scary goblins and many American homes have been prepped with the finest candies and spooky themes.
Halloween spending this year is expected to reach a record $10.6 billion, exceeding last years record of $10.1 billion, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF).
Consumers plan on spending Halloween budgets on handing out candy, decorating their homes, dressing up in costumes, carving pumpkins, attending Halloween parties and dressing up their pets, according to the NRF survey.
Despite millions of Americans going through financial pressure due to inflation, Halloween spending will continue to dominate this year’s financial landscape. For many families, dishing out money for high priced candy is affecting their plans due to inflation, which is up 8.2% in September according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
More than a third of surveyed consumers on LendingTree admit they plan to spend more than they can afford this year. 44% of those surveyed said the reason for overspending was accidental, and 34% said they did it to make their children happy.
The pagan ritual of celebrating Halloween dates back two thousand years, when celebrants used to light fires, pray to the sun, and indulge in six days of drinking alcohol and gluttonous feasts. Costumes were worn by ancient Celts while presenting offerings to their gods. Failure to participate in the mandatory Samhain or Halloween celebrations would result in punishment from the gods.
Nineteenth century immigrants then brought this tradition to North America which evolved into a tradition of appeasing the spirits, who were said to have come back to life from the dead and harm the living and their crops. By wearing costumes, adherents believed they were able to scare those spirits away.
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