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Minnesotans in the mood to shop as holidays approach

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The University of St. Thomas' Opus College of Business has released its annual holiday shopping survey.

The survey says shoppers are planning to spend nearly $837 per household this holiday season. That is the highest amount since the survey began 12 years ago. Compared to last year, the survey predicts consumers will spend about 8.3 percent more or $64, and up 19 percent from 2011.

Fox 9 reports that shoppers have once again listed the Mall of America as the number one shopping destination in Minnesota.

Gift cards are at the top of the shopping list for Twin Cities shoppers, followed by clothes, cash, books and toys.

About a third of shoppers are also planning to make purchases online. The survey indicates that is the top go-to site.

"If we take the market as a whole, because of an increase of .9 of 1 percent, in terms of households, the total spend will be about $1.1 billion," St. Thomas Professor David Brennan told KARE 11.

Brennan expects the retail success to continue into 2014 as well.

Brennan added that, "We have a diversified economy. We have got lots of construction going on and even more construction this next year, so, what we see this year, I would forecast that, unless something drastic occurs, we are going to have a very vibrant economy and, as a result, that retail sales should be very good as well."

With the shopping season being a little shorter this year, many retailers are speeding up their promotions. The survey says shoppers have already started their holiday buying, 21 percent told St. Thomas researchers they are already done.

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