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Alberta in second place for spending on “fun” items

Alberta in second place for spending on “fun” items

Posted on: 12/3/2018 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

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Now that it’s December, many of us will be braving the shopping malls and big box retailers in search of that perfect Christmas present. And at the top of the list of gifts to give are all of the fun things in the stores: electronics, clothes, and sporting goods and books.

Stacking up the provinces over the last twelve months for which we have data, British Columbians are in first place, spending just over $2,000 per person for these consumer good categories. Alberta is in second place at $1,969 per person. (The retail data are for the twelve months from October 2017 to September 2018, divided by the provincial population during the third quarter of 2018.)

Ontario is in third place at $1,847 per person, but after that the provincial per capita figure drops off significantly. At only $974 per person, shoppers in Newfoundland and Labrador spend less than half the amount spent in Alberta and B.C.

But while British Columbians spend more over all on these discretionary items combined, Alberta takes top spot in two of the three categories: electronics and appliances ($537 per person) and sporting goods, books and hobbies ($442). These are represented in the graph below by the red and blue bars, respectively.

Clothes are where shoppers in B.C. like to spend their disposable income. At $1,114 per person, they outpace shoppers in Alberta who spend $990 per person.

Retail fun, graph

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