With renewed confidence in their economic standing, American consumers are expected to increase their spending on Valentine’s Day gifts. Luxury items are a highlight of this revival with total jewelry sales forecasted to spearhead the growth by rising 11.3 percent to $1.46 billion.

Consumers are to spend 5.8 percent more on Valentine’s Day purchases in 2011 than 2010, totaling $18.6 billion or about $125 per person, according to a forecast by market research firm IBISWorld. “This year, IBISWorld expects jewelry to make up 7.8 percent of all Valentine’s Day sales, making its way back to pre-recessionary levels,” the firm added.

“Luxury spending is already on the rise, so it will come as no surprise that bracelets, earrings, necklaces and rings will be the go-to gift choice for many Americans,” said IBISWorld retail industry analyst Nikoleta Panteva.

Other large benefactors of the holiday are expected to be online retailers because the holiday falls on a Monday and people will be working. As the last November-December holiday has shown, more consumers than ever before prefer to buy gifts online. This trend is likely to be repeated on this Valentine’s Day, with orders placed for same-day delivery.

While greeting cards and candy are expected to grow 4.9 percent and 5.1 percent, respectively, the only category expected to outpace the growth in jewelry sales is flowers. IBISWorld forecasts flower orders to total $1.58 billion, a 16.8 percent growth.

The largest category according to IBISWorld is dining out, with Americans expected to spend $8.83 billion on food and drinks.

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