Holiday Giving

Economics(ML), Everyday Economics, Mini Lessons

For many Americans, the months of November and December are filled with holiday preparations. For many, that preparation involves buying and giving gifts.

Have you ever received a gift from a friend or family member that you thought to yourself, “I will never be able to use this,” or “I hope they included the gift receipt”?

Check out the engaging lesson in the economics of gift giving. This resource is for you to enjoy and share during this holiday season with your students, friends and family.

The Economics of Wasteful Spending: The Deadweight Loss of Christmas

What is the right gift?
Milton Friedman: Ways to spend money

Is Gift-Giving Bad for the Economy?

1. Why does the sentiment of gift-giving get in the way of economics?
2. How do Black Friday sales cause consumers to ignore individual preferences?
3. According to economist Joel Waldfogel, cash should be the best gift choice when selecting a gift for someone that you are not close with. So, why is cash “icky” or an undesirable gift? Have consumers been programmed to think cash is bad?