Survey: Holiday shopping expected to be up this year

LOS ANGELES (AP) - A survey of holiday shoppers finds an upswing in spending plans this year.

Deloitte retail sector chief Alison Paul says shoppers plan to spend an average $421 on holiday gifts, up about 8 percent from last year.

And discount stores are no longer their first choice. For the first time, Paul says, the Internet is the top shopping destination for holiday shopping by a majority of consumers. Until this year it was discount box stores.

Paul says consumers also now expect free shipping as a standard convenience, so online retailers who don't offer it will lose out.

Three-quarters of consumers say coupons and promotional offers will influence their holiday spending. And nearly a third plan to have most of their holiday shopping done before Black Friday.


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