This year, seven swans will still cost over $13,000, the most expensive gift in the song The 12 Days of Christmas as almost every other gets pricier, according to PNC’s Christmas Price Index released Monday.
The annual index has been around since 1984 and measures the current cost of obtaining all items in a full verse of the iconic carol.
The index is meant to be a reflection of the broader U.S. economy and “parallels inflationary growth.”
After plummeting last year, the index is up 5.7 percent this season, the largest jump since 2013. It would cost about $41,206 to obtain the requisite items from each of the 12 verses. That figure is up from $16,168 last year and $38,994 in 2019.
The all-encompassing figure doesn’t necessarily tell the whole story. In a more nuanced look, two turtle doves would cost around $450, 50 percent higher than last year. At the same time, the price of seven swans held steady at $13,125. However, because there has been no increase to the federal minimum wage, the price of eight maids-a-milking also didn’t budge and will again cost an affordable $58. It’s also by far the cheapest gift on the 12-item list.
“Inflation this year has certainly been surprising to the upside. This very specialty gift basket is largely mirroring what we’re seeing in the larger economy,” said PNC Chief Investment Officer Amanda Agati.
The National Retail Federation expects the average American consumer to spend $648 this holiday season on gifts for family, friends and co-workers.
A recent Gallup poll found Americans expect to spend $837 on gifts.