Explainer: Christmas 2017 by the Numbers
Religion & Liberty Online

Explainer: Christmas 2017 by the Numbers

As the most widely observed cultural holiday in the world, Christmas produces many things—joy, happiness, gratitude, reverence. And numbers. Lots of peculiar, often large, numbers. Here are a few to contemplate this season:

$74.70 – Average amount U.S. consumers spent on real Christmas trees in 2015.

$98.70 – Average amount U.S. consumers spent on fake Christmas trees in 2015.

34,500,000 – Number of real Christmas trees sold in the U.S. each year.

10,000,000 – Number of fake Christmas trees sold each year.

7 – Average growing time in years for a Christmas tree.

350 million – Number of Christmas trees currently growing on Christmas tree farms.

326.4 million – Current population of the United States.

$27.21 — The energy costs of lighting a six-foot Christmas tree, lit 12 hours a day for 40 days, decorated with various light types.

$1,500,000,000 – Estimated value of U.S. imports of Christmas tree ornaments from China between January and September 2016.

$22,700,000,000 – Estimated retail sales by the nation’s department stores (including leased departments) in December 2016. This represents a decrease of $1 billion in retail sales from December of the previous year.

42.7 percent — Estimated percentage of charitable giving that occurs between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.

$906 – Average amount people in the U.S. estimated they’ll spend on Christmas presents in 2017.

108,000,000 — Average number of homes Santa Claus has to visit on December 25 (assuming there is at least one “nice” child in each).

Joe Carter

Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).