Mother’s Day gifts, celebrations in U.S.

Eighty-four percent of U.S. adults will celebrate Mother’s Day this year, according to the National Retail Federation. Total spend is expected to reach 33.5 billion this year, with the average person planning to spend $254.04 on Mother’s Day gifts and celebrations. Those between the ages of 35 and 44 are expected to be the biggest spenders, budgeting $345.75 on average for the holiday.

The most popular gifts to give are flowers and greeting cards, both at 74%. Forty-eight percent of respondents said they will focus on finding items that are unique or different. When asked who they are shopping for, most (59%) are making purchases for a mother or stepmother, followed by a wife (22%) or daughter (12%). 

The study was conducted April 1-8, 2024. Learn more. 

UK consumer confidence improves

Consumer confidence is slowly increasing in the U.K., according to a study by GfK. The “anticipation of further tax cuts” were cited as an underlying factor for the improvement of the study’s overall index score in April, which was up 2 points (compared to March 2024). In addition, domestic energy prices dropped to their lowest in two years, and inflation fell to its lowest since 2021. The overall index score is made up of five underlying measures: personal financial situation over the last 12 months, personal financial situation over the next 12 months, general economic situation over the last 12 months, general economic situation over the next 12 months and major purchase index. 

In a press release, Joe Station, GfK, said, “We are a long way from the much firmer sentiment last seen in the period before Brexit, COVID and the conflict in Ukraine. There is a lot of ground to make up, and caution is needed in the face of continuing economic and fiscal challenges …” 

The research was conducted in April 2024. Learn more. 

How Americans plan to use 2024 tax refunds 

Many Americans rely on their tax refunds to help pay for everyday expenses, according to a study by Trustpilot, conducted by Attest. Per the IRS filing season statistics (as of April 19, 2024), the average refund amount is $2,850. 

The study reviewed the top personal finance impacts of tax refunds (multiple selections apply), which included: groceries and household items (35%); travel/vacations (31%); dining out (31%); delaying other bill payments (credit cards, loans, etc.) (26%); and gas and transportation (25%). Only 13% of respondents selected “nothing will be impacted.” 

At the time of the study, 19% of respondents who had not filed yet reported they were worried about owing money to the IRS, and 7% reported that if they owe money to the government, they won’t be able to afford household items they need. 

The research was conducted in the U.S. on March 28-29. Learn more. 

Summer vacations 

How do Americans plan to spend their summer this year? According to a survey by Bankrate, 53% are planning a summer vacation. Of the 47% of Americans who are planning to skip a summer vacation this year, 65% cite affordability as the main problem. In addition, about 7% of U.S. adults will only take a staycation this summer and 18% selected “don’t know/not sure yet” when asked if they are planning to take at least one vacation this summer. 

Of those who plan to travel, 36% are willing to go into debt to pay for the vacation. Gen Z and Millennials are more likely to be willing to take on debt to pay for summer 2024 vacations (42% and 47%, respectively), than Gen X and Boomers. 

The research was conducted between March 18-20, 2024. Learn more.