As the Great Recession continues to take its toll on American households, gifts this season will be practical. Even if some gifters splurge on electronics, others will give the most useful present of all -- cash.
Clothing, electronics, gift cards, toys and cash top the list of most popular gifts in a new Consumer Reports poll. This emphasis on practicality is sure to make retailers cringe, as 58 percent of consumers seem likely to skip shopping altogether and simply put a bow on what's in their wallets.
With gift cards, though, retailers are likely to win easy profits. A full 62 percent of poll respondents said they would give gift cards, which generally are a great way for retailers to make money for nothing. As of October, more than a fourth of those who received gift cards last year didn't use them, according to Consumer Reports.
See the top gift choices below:
According to Consumer Report's Holiday Shopping Poll 58 percent of Americans polled said they will give cash gifts this holiday season.
62 percent of Americans polled in the Consumer Reports Holiday Shopping Poll says they will give electronic gifts this year. Just don't expect to get much of a deal on the iPad this year, but Best Buy is offering a 15-inch Toshiba laptop for just $399. Also popular this year video gaming consoles like the XBox 360 and Sony Playstation 3 .
Consumer Report's Holiday Shopping Poll says 62 percent plan on spending money on toys this year. The most popular toy for kids? It's the iPad, according to Nielsen.
62 percent of American holiday shoppers will give gift cards this year, according to Consumer Report's Holiday Shopping Poll. Not sure what to get? Try the gift card. Retailers will love you, especially since last year consumers left $5 billion in unused value on gift cards.
According to the Consumer Report's Holiday Shopping Poll Most Americans said they planned to give clothes as gifts this holiday season. For the 68 percent shopping for fabrics, Macy's has holiday deals on Polos starting at $25 and Forever 21 has both boy and girl sweaters starting at just $10.