Super Bowl Spending

February 3, 2012 Updated Feb 3, 2012 at 9:22 AM EDT

By WKBW News

February 3, 2012 Updated Feb 3, 2012 at 9:22 AM EDT

BUFFALO, NY ( Business First ) More Americans than ever are expected to celebrate the Super Bowl and the cost is going up! The Retail Advertising and Marketing Association estimates that 173 million people will watch the big game on Sunday, that's the most in the survey's eight-year history. And it's two million more than last year.

Researchers say consumer spending for the Super Bowl will reach an all-time high. The average consumer will spend about $64 on related merchandise, apparel and snacks, up from about $59 last year. Total Super Bowl spending is expected to reach $11 billion.

The Super Bowl comes off a solid holiday season so retailers will try to keep the buying trend going with big promotions.

Here's a look at what people are buying. 71% of sports fans will buy food and beverages. Almost 9% will buy team apparel or accessories. About 6% will buy decorations. And two percent will splurge on furniture or a new entertainment center. The survey says sales of new TVs are on the rise this year too.

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