Survey: Halloween to Boost Retail Spending
Los Angeles Total spending this Halloween will rise 5% to $5.77 billion this year, according to IBISWorld Inc.
The business-research firm believes there are two main factors contributing to growth in Halloween sales: higher prices and pure escapism. Anxious families that have been consumed by the instability of the financial markets will view Halloween as an opportunity to forget about their finances and have some fun, the firm said.
“Back in 2002, when economic growth was fairly soft following the events of Sept. 11, we saw strong spending at Halloween,” said George Van Horn, senior analyst at IBISWorld.
“Retailers will be pulling out all the promotional stops to ensure this year follows the pattern of 2002.”
According to IBISWorld, this year’s Halloween sales can be broken down into four product segments: Costumes, 35.9%; candy, 30.5%; decorations (including pumpkins), 27.4%; and greeting cards, 6.2%.
Whole Foods voices opposition to new FTC rules
AUSTIN, Texas In comments submitted to the Federal Trade Commission, Whole Foods Market announced its strong opposition to new and amended regulations proposed by the Federal Trade Commission.
“Through these regulations, the FTC is attempting to deprive American businesses of the fundamental principles of due process, the very businesses that believed that mergers should actually benefit the consumer,” said Lanny Davis, outside counsel to Whole Foods Market. “Even worse, the FTC is trying to push through this radical change of its regulations in a limited 30 -day comment period, just weeks before the Presidential election and in the middle of a national economic crisis. This is not acceptable behavior by a regulatory agency that has such power over American businesses affecting millions of consumers.”
The comments submitted to the FTC by Paul Denis of Dechert LLP, outside counsel to Whole Foods Market, protested the FTC’s “rush to judgment,” referring both to the unusually short 30 day comment period and to the effects of the proposed regulations, which would prevent many, if not most, companies from having enough time to defend themselves from FTC actions attempting to block mergers. The proposed regulations would specify “that the actual date for the evidentiary hearing would be 5 months from the date of the complaint in merger cases,” despite the fact that, as FTC Commissioners have frequently recognized, “the merger review process is highly fact-intensive.” According to the comments, “the proposed regulation adopts an unfair ‘one-size fits all’ approach, regardless of a particular matter’s complexity.”
The company is forming an “Ad Hoc Committee for FTC Fair Play” and it hopes other businesses and organizations will immediately submit opposition comments to the FTC seeking an extension of the comment period as well as a rejection of the proposed regulations. Those interested in joining the “ad hoc committee,” can do so by visiting http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/ftc.
Amazon releases their hot toy list
SEATTLE, Wash. Amazon.com revealed the Holiday Toy List, where customers can find this season’s video games, sporting goods, electronics, movies and more.
“The Holiday Toy List is a helpful tool for parents, friends and family members who are searching for the perfect toys for the kids on their list,” says Sarah Wood, director of the toy store for Amazon.com.
The Holiday Toy List features products from leading brands like Mattel, Jakks Pacific, Crayola, LEGO, Razor, Schwinn, Sony, Nintendo, Apple and Fender Starcaster. With most products in the Holiday Toy List eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping and Amazon Prime, Amazon.com expects the customer favorites to include: Apple iPod touch 64 GB, Crayola Crayon Maker, Fisher Price Elmo’s Tickle Hands, LeapFrog Zippity High-Energy Learning System, Nintendo DSi, Speakal iPig 2.1 Stereo iPod Docking Station, Transformers Movie 2 Combiner Construction Devastator and Zune HD 32 GB Video MP3 Player.
For the latest prices and availability, visit Amazon.com or the Amazon.com Holiday Toy List at www.amazon.com/holidaytoylist.