The average American is spending 40 percent less a day in stores, restaurants, gas stations, or online in the two weeks ahead of Valentines Day, compared to a year ago as consumers continue to feel the effects of weaker economy.
Americans spent an average of $61 a day compared to $102 average for the same two-week period a year ago, as the country continues to sink into recession.
Although reported spending has been on the down trend since late September, the 14-day average spending figure fell below $60 last week for the first time, to $58, and has since held close to that level, Gallup said.
Separately, a Jan. 30-Feb. 1 USA Today/Gallup poll found three-quarters of Americans or 74 percent, said they have had to cut back on their spending in the last six months because of concerns about their household income.
Meanwhile, 38 percent of Americans say they have cut back a lot and 36 percent have cut back a little.
In spite of lower bleaker conditions, popular traditions will not be disappearing anytime soon. Almost half of those surveyed said they would still take their Valentine out for dinner, while one-third intends to buy flowers.
However, total Valentine's Day spending is expected to be about $14.7 billion, down 13.6 percent from the $17 billion spent last year, according to survey by BIGresearch for the National Retail Federation.