Close Close
Popular Financial Topics Discover relevant content from across the suite of ALM legal publications From the Industry More content from ThinkAdvisor and select sponsors Investment Advisor Issue Gallery Read digital editions of Investment Advisor Magazine Tax Facts Get clear, current, and reliable answers to pressing tax questions
Luminaries Awards

Portfolio > Economy & Markets

12 Days of Christmas Gifts Top $100,000

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

This year for the first time, the cost of the gifts given by very generous True Love to the singer of the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” totaled more than $100,000, signaling that True Love is either very well off and unaffected by the recession or has maxed out his credit cards and is in need of counseling.

With the total coming in at $101,119.84 for all 364 gifts, a 4.4% increase over Christmas 2010, the gifts cost the most they ever have, according to figures released by PNC Wealth Management.

If True Love has been high-tech with his shopping and done it all on the Internet this year instead of ferreting out the best deals by buying locally, he has been even more extravagant; Web-based shopping, instead of being a bargain, has resulted in additional charges for shipping, handling, and who knows what that upped the price by more than $73,000, resulting in a total bill of $174,382.93. No bargain hunting for him!

Swans, you may remember from last year, tend to display a distinct tendency toward price volatility. This year is no different, with the cost for seven of them rising by 12.5% to $6,300. Last year they were up by 6.5% over 2009, so they’re getting really pricey. Birds in general were iffy, with demand for some falling while others rose in popularity.

And apparently everyone had gardening on their minds this year, to send the cost of pear trees up 13.3%. (Maybe that explains why my pear trees cost so much last spring!) All I know is, at those prices, they had better produce lots of pears next year, or come 2013 people might have to add a hive of bees to the list.

What might surprise you, though, is the fact that the gold rings actually dropped in cost: where they cost $649.95 last year, this year they were only $645—a drop of 0.8%. According to James Dunigan, managing executive of investments for PNC Wealth Management, that is due to near-record-high gold commodity prices, which has put a bit of a damper on the retail gold market.

The pipers and drummers must have gotten a bit of a raise, with both items costing 3% more; however, the poor milkmaids, stuck at minimum wage, stayed right where they were. So did the dancing ladies, although they were certainly better paid for their work.

Should you be planning such a rampant act of generosity for your own beloved, or if this is your idea of the ideal Christmas present, you might be curious to see what all the other items cost, and how their prices compare to last year. So we have included a helpful little table for you to take with you as you check that bargain-shopping app on your iPhone.


Price in 2010

Price in 2011

Partridge in a pear tree/Partridge alone/Pear tree alone

$161.99 /12.00/    149.99


Two turtledoves



Three French hens



Four calling birds



Five gold rings



Six geese a-laying



Seven swans a-swimming



Eight maids a-milking



Nine ladies dancing



Ten lords a-leaping



Eleven pipers piping



Twelve drummers drumming







© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.