Valentine's Day brings out the romance - and the wallet

local@modbee.comFebruary 13, 2013 

— Flowers? Chocolates? Dinner out?

If you're planning on celebrating Valentine's Day with one of the above, you're not alone. But many folks are dialing it down this year, in a nod to the still struggling economy.

Nationwide, flowers are expected to bring in $1.92 billion this year, up from $1.88 billion last year, according to a BIGinsight survey for the National Retail Federation.

Though there are more orders of flowers coming in, the amount spent per arrangement is dropping a bit. Adults are planning to spend an average of $36.77 on flowers — a slight decrease from $37.44 last year, the survey showed. Two years ago, they spent $36.78.

The slowly recovering economy is still putting a damper on the holiday, with 55 percent of consumers in a PriceGrabber survey saying it has affected how much they spend on their sweeties.

Still, romance wins out in the end: The National Retail Federation predicts Americans will shell out an average of $130.97 on Valentine’s Day in 2013, up from $126.03 last year. Total spending will reach $18.6 billion.

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