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Overwhelming Majority of Consumers Will Cut Back Or Spend Zero on
Holiday Purchases

The November poll hosted on Apprisen’s website asked consumers about their holiday spending.  The survey revealed that:

  • 42% of consumers intend to spend less on holiday purchases than last year—indicating they are in a worse financial position
  • 32% plan to spend nothing at all—fearing further financial distress

“This statistic speaks loudly, and underscores that consumers are not willing to repeat the mistakes of Christmases past by spending irresponsibly this year,” said Jana Castanon, spokesperson for Apprisen.

A seemingly contradictory statistic was revealed in Apprisen’s October poll where sixty-nine percent of those participating felt that their best financial days were in front of them. Taken together, the two polls suggest that Americans are both optimistic and realistic, a combination that could lead to a brighter financial future.

“It takes optimism to endure the difficult economic times of the past few years,” continued Castanon. “However, it takes a dose of realism to not become an emotional spender during the holidays. It appears as though consumers have learned a tough lesson and will emerge better equipped to face future financial challenges.”

Looking at the other poll answer options:

  • 20% intend to spend as they did in 2011—indicating their financial situation is now stable
  • 7%  will spend more—feeling as though they are in a better financial position this year
    The results indicate their financial situation is now stable and feel they are in a better financial position this year.

Holiday spending can financially make or break retailers.  The same is true for consumers.  Don’t let it be your personal fiscal cliff.

The actual November poll question and responses are as follows:

This holiday season I will…
A. Spend as I did last year because my financial life is stable 20%
B. Cut back on spending since I am worse off financially this year 42%
C. Spend more than last year because I am in a better financial position 7%
D. Not spend at all because I anticipate further financial distress 30%


Apprisen, a national nonprofit credit counseling agency, has been helping consumers manage their finances and get out of debt for over 55 years. Certified counselors provide money management and debt counseling, HUD-approved housing counseling, and financial education. Services are provided in 10 states through local offices and nationally by phone or via the Internet. The oldest nonprofit credit counseling organization in the country, Apprisen was formerly known in its local communities as Consumer Credit Counseling Service (CCCS). Accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA), CCCS is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC), the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and AICCCA. Information is available 24/7. Call 800-355-2227 or visit the website, You can "like us" on Facebook at  and follow us on Twitter at

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