Nov. 23, 2010

Discover® U.S.Spending Monitorsm Shows Encouraging Signs For Retailers Approaching Black Friday

Big Drop in Number of Consumers Planning to Spend Less this Year on Holiday Gifts Compared to Last Year, 18- to 39- Year Olds, Affluent Consumers Signaling Higher Holiday Spending Intentions

RIVERWOODS, Ill., Nov 23, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- The number of shoppers who say they expect to spend less this holiday season has fallen 10 percentage points from this time last year, according to early data from the Discover U.S. Spending Monitor. The news, coupled with increased spending intentions on the part of younger and more affluent consumers, may signal happier holidays for retailers this season.

Last November, 65 percent of consumers said they were going to spend less on holiday gifts than they did the year before. This year only 55 percent feel that way. Of the 10 percent who shifted, the majority said they would spend about the same, but one in four said they would be spending more this year.

The Monitor also reported that both young shoppers and people in higher income brackets may be willing to open their wallets a little more this year. More than 14 percent of consumers, ages 18-39, are looking to spend more than they did a year ago, up from 11 percent in November 2009. Similarly, there was an increase - from 9 percent in 2009 to 12 percent this year - in the number of consumers with incomes over $75,000 who said they expect to spend more in 2010.

Consumers aren't quite ready to rack up holiday spending increases on par with what the Monitor reported in 2007, before the recession. One in five expected to spend more on holiday gifts than the previous year. This year, only 10 percent are looking to spend more in 2010 than they did in 2009. Nonetheless, that's up from 7 percent the year before and represents the first time since 2007 that the numbers have reached double digits.

Full results for the November Discover U.S. Spending Monitor will be released on Wednesday, Dec. 8. For more survey data, charts and information, please visit

About Discover U.S. Spending Monitor

The Discover® U.S. Spending MonitorSM is a monthly index of consumer spending intentions and capacity that is based on interviews with a random sample of 8,200 U.S. adults conducted at a rate of 275 per night. In addition to spending, the survey asks consumers their opinions on the U.S. economy and their personal finances. The Monitor began in May 2007 with a base index of 100. Surveys are conducted by Rasmussen Reports, an independent survey research firm (

About Discover

Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) is a direct banking and payment services company with one of the most recognized brands in U.S. financial services. Since its inception in 1986, the company has become one of the largest card issuers in the United States. The company operates the Discover card, America's cash rewards pioneer, and offers personal and student loans, online savings accounts, certificates of deposit and money market accounts through its Discover Bank subsidiary. Its payment businesses consist of Discover Network, with millions of merchant and cash access locations; PULSE, one of the nation's leading ATM/debit networks; and Diners Club International, a global payments network with acceptance in more than 185 countries and territories. For more information, visit

SOURCE: Discover Financial Services

Matthew Towson

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