The cost of the fanciful mix of gifts described in the classic carol, The 12 Days of Christmas, has been tracked for over a quarter of a century. [hr][dropcap]W[/dropcap] ho knew how expensive the Seven-Swans-A-Singing would be?
It was a pretty fowl year back in 2010.
Who knew the price of a French hen would increase by 233%?
Or that two turtle doves would cost 78.6% more? That a lone partridge would go up 20%?
Not that there’s anything wrong with a basket of assorted swans, geese, French hens and turtle doves … I’d prefer a beef tenderloin myself … but who would have expected in 2010, the “Christmas Price Index”, which has closely tracked the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for most of its 27 years, would rise by 9.2%, the 2nd largest increase over that period (2nd only to a 16% jump in 2003).
[pullquote]What I don’t like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day. ~ Phyllis Diller[/pullquote]
PNC Wealth Management has carefully tracked these costs for more than 25 years. This year, they’ve even created a Gingerbread House to explain this index and educate people about the economy.
So, What Did All This Goodness Cost in 2015?
For the first time ever, only 3 of the 12 items actually increased at all.
Only one of the 12 gifts increased significantly, which is the price of two turtle doves, up 11.5% to $290. Who knew?
Even though the price of gold dropped this year, PNC reports the price of five golden rings ($750) stayed the same because of a steady demand for classic gold wedding bands.
The most expensive item by far is Seven-Swans-A-Swimming. They didn’t get more expensive this year, but the cost is still $13,125. How many do you want?
What does all of this cost?
The index in 2015 for one of each item is $34,130.99, up only 0.6% since last year but still up almost 17% over 2010. Oh, that’s all? Feeling better already ….
BTW, if you want to give all of the gifts featured in the song … repeats included … it’s 364 gifts for a total of a mere $155,407, up over 60% since 2010 but only 0.6% since last year.
It’s no wonder the Fed just increased the prime interest rate for the first time in nine years. It’s likely the cost of this package next year will also start climbing, so you better get ’em while they’re still so affordable.
Check your mailbox for YOUR basket.
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