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Will Hurricane Ian and inflation impact holiday spending? Some shoppers say they're spending differently.

Holiday spending
Posted at 5:17 PM, Nov 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-30 20:57:40-05

ESTERO, Fla. — It's that time of year where you're probably out looking for the perfect gift for family and friends. With inflation on the rise and Hurricane Ian changing our lives, those factors could impact holiday spending.

According to the National Retail Federation, Americans are expected to spend $960 billion between November 1 and Christmas.

"I think it's an awesome thing, because if we don't get out there and spend, we're not going to have our businesses that support half the people in our country," one shopper said.

It's a number Adam Bruno, a financial advisor with Evolution Retirement Services says is a little high, even with inflation.

"We're seeing this increase in spending in this environment where that shouldn't really be happening with interest rates on the rise and things like that," he said. "Make the holidays special as much as you can. It doesn't necessarily mean that you have to spend thousands and thousands of dollars."

Americans spent $950 billion last year, and Bruno says the increase can't all come back to inflation.

"I think part of it is that emotional norm of listen we still have to have Christmas," he explained. "Things have been really rough financially, but let's still make it happen."

And shoppers are making it happen.

"Shirts, jewelry, all the little jazzy stuff," one shopper said she bought on Wednesday.

"Soap, hand cream. I still have a few more places to hit," another said.

Others are taking it easy this year or choosing to spend their money in other places.

"I'm keeping it light this year, little things — nothing big," a shopper said.

"I think right now it's taking care of the folks that didn't have as much luck as we did with the storm," another shopper said.

Many shoppers told Fox 4 after Ian, the holidays are a little more special this year.

"Enjoy each other, that’s what the holidays are about anyway instead of spending a ton of money," a shopper said.