A large number of Americans plan to celebrate the Irish festival of St. Patrick’s Day on Mar 17 this year and spend as much as $5.9 billion, per National Retail Federation. This is the highest level in its 14-year survey history and up from last year’s record of $5.3 billion. Average spending per person is also expected to climb from $37.92 last year to $39.65.

More than 149 million Americans are expected to celebrate the Irish holiday, with 83% wearing green, 31% planning a special dinner, 27% throwing a party at a bar or a restaurant, 27% decorating their homes or offices in an Irish theme and 16% attending private parties. While the day is popular among the 18-24 years age group, the biggest spenders will be the 35-44 years age group, shelling out at an average of $45.76 for the holiday.

About 50% of the Americans will be spending on holiday-themed food, 41% on beverages, 31% on apparel, 26% on decoration, and 16% on candy. Coming to shopping destinations, 38% purchases will be from grocery stores, 31% from discount stores, 20% from department stores, 19% from bars or restaurants, and 9% online, specialty stores, or drug stores.

Investors should also note that St. Patrick’s Day is the fourth largest drinking day in the United States, after New Year’s Eve, Christmas, and Fourth of July with Guinness being the most popular brand. Some of the other popular drinks include Irish stout and Irish ale.

Given the splurge in spending, it will not come as a surprise if the stock market could Wearin’ o’ the Green in the honor of St. Patrick’s Day. In particular, retailers, food and beverage companies could see a jump in their stock prices as higher consumer spending will likely boost their revenues. So, raise a toast to the stocks in these sectors and try to find some hidden luck on this Irish festival.

Diageo Plc (DEO – Free Report)

Based in London, Diageo is a global leader in alcohol beverages and has an outstanding portfolio of world famous brands across spirits, beer, cider, and wine categories. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B, Buchanan’s and Windsor whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness.

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