Consumers may have intentions to spend more this holiday season, but many plan to avoid shopping on Black Friday, according to the Property Holiday Shopping Survey conducted by analysts at Sterne Agee.
In a note to investors Sterne Agee Charles Grom and his team surveyed 500 consumers and asked about their shopping intentions. Grom and his fellow analysts found that 69% of the respondents plan to spend more or the same amount this Black Friday compared with the 61.7% in 2013. Last year, respondents cited higher income was the main driver for them to spend higher.
The analysts also found that 32.4% of the respondents plan to do most of their shopping online, up from 30.2% last year. Based on the survey, Kohls.com garnered the highest market share among the websites of department stores.
The analysts also found that 87.6% of the respondents have no plan to purchase the iPhone 6 or Apple Watch. Only 2.4% of the respondents intended to spend less on something else because they recently bought the the new Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) products.
Grom and his fellow analysts noted that the U.S. macroeconomic data showed an improving backdrop for this Black Friday and the entire holiday shopping season. The analysts noted that reached as high as 94.5% in October, significantly higher than the 73.1% in the same period last year.
The declining oil price also helped put more money on the wallets of consumers. The price of oil declined 10% to $2.89 per gallon year-over-year or 22% from $3.70 per gallon last summer.
The U.S. unemployment rate declined to 5.8% and the total employment growth was 2.9% in October. The analysts also noted that the trickle down wealth effect from U.S. stocks were near all-time highs. The S&P 500 went up 11.1% this year.
Weather expected to be favorable this Black Friday
According to the analysts, the weather this Black Friday should be drier and warmer compared with the rigid temperature last year based on the forecast of the WTI.
In December, the weather is expected to be milder compared last year. The WTI forecasted that the snowfall will drop 32%, which is favorable given the store closure and distribution traffic problems caused by the series of snow storms throughout the holiday season in 2013.
The survey showed that a majority of consumers plan to do most of their shopping in December.
Black Friday pricing and promotional landscape
Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) led Wa-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) by and Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT) by 1.1% and 3%, respectively. It was ahead Best Buy Co Inc (NYSE:BBY) by only 0.4%.
When it comes to toys, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) has the lowest prices. The price of toys at Target 6.1% more expensive, Toys “R” Us was 12.3% more and 2.1% higher at Amazon.com.