POTTSTOWN PA – The cost of gifts described in the classic holiday song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” has jumped a lavish 8.1 percent over last year, according to a yearly economic analysis supplied by PNC Bank‘s Wealth Management division.
According to PNC’s 24th annual Christmas Price Index (CPI), the total cost of the song’s gifts at 2008 prices is $21,080, up $1,573 from last year. Going online for the same stuff was even less of a bargain: that grand total was $31,957, almost $11,000 more than the traditional index.
Seven Swans-a-Swimming proved to be a driver of this year’s index, with a whopping 33.3-percent increase in price due to their scarcity. Buyers would spend $5,600 this year for swans, compared with $4,200 in 2007, accounting for $1,400 of the $1,573 increase. Who’d have guessed that birds would blow the gift budget?
For pricing, PNC’s sources ranged from retailers (five gold rings, pear trees) to personnel recruiters (maids-a-milking) to the National Aviary in Pittsburgh (french hens, calling birds, geese-a-laying, the swans, turtle doves, partridges) and Philadanco, a modern dance company in Philadelphia (drummers drumming, pipers piping and lords-a-leaping).
The PNC Bank branch office closest to Sanatoga village center is at 1535 E. High St.
Photos by PNC and Björgvin Guðmundsson