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Cost of "The Twelve Days of Christmas" Song Items Reflects Consumer Inflation Trends
Thanks to the weak economy in 2009 the PNC Christmas Price Index increased by a modest 1.8 percent compared to last year in the whimsical economic analysis by PNC Wealth Management based on the prices of gifts in the holiday classic "The Twelve Days of Christmas."
According to the 26th annual survey, the price tag for the PNC CPI is $21,465.56 in 2009, just $385.46 more than last year. It is the smallest increase since 2002, when the index fell 7.6 percent.
The PNC CPI exceeds the U.S. government's Consumer Price Index, the widely used measure of inflation calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which is down 1.3 percent this year.
Among the 12 gifts in the Index, three items fell measurably from last year while five increased in cost and four remained steady.
As part of its annual tradition, PNC Wealth Management also tabulates the "True Cost of Christmas," which is the total cost of items gifted by a True Love who repeats all of the song's verses. This holiday season, very generous True Loves will receive a bargain and pay $87,402.81 for all 364 gifts, a mere 0.9 percent increase compared to last year.
For a more detailed look at PNC's Index, please visit our updated Web site at www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com. This year's enhanced web site features young children representing the items in the song as Managing Executive of Investments for PNC Wealth Management, James Dunigan, narrates.
Each year, educators across the country use the Christmas Price Index to teach economic trends to students of all ages. With that in mind, this year's site includes interactive activities, annual results and PNC CPI trends in a Flash presentation, games and much more.