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2014 "Cost of Loving Index" Reports Steady Prices for Popular Valentine Gifts, Giving Consumers the Go Ahead to Spoil Loved Ones This Holiday

Annual Houston Asset Management report reveals five items remain unchanged, while the cost of dinner and a movie increases

HOUSTON, Feb. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Affirming your affections this Valentine's Day won't cost much more than last year, according to the annual "Cost of Loving Index." Only a third of the popular gift items tracked by the index have increased in price this year reflecting a three-year trend in declining costs. In addition, you can toast the price of a California chardonnay that dropped by more than 10 percent this year.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140204/PH57897)

The annual "Cost of Loving Index" is compiled by Houston Asset Management, a Houston-based investment advisory firm, and has followed the price of nine customary Valentine gifts since 1990. The highest price increase of 2014 at 6.7 percent is for his designer silk tie, while the costs for her lingerie or perfume remain stable.

"This year shows a total increase of 2.3 percent in the Cost of Loving Index," said Bob Frater, CFP®, CEO of Houston Asset Management.  "That's a little lower than the 2.4 percent increase last year and a good drop from the 4.8 percent increase in 2012. But it is still higher than the 2014 cost of living adjustment provided by the Social Security Administration that is only 1.5 percent."

Frater said the cost of first-run movie tickets for two has increased the most since the index began and jumps 4.8 percent this year to $22. To complete date night, the cost for an elegant candlelight dinner for two increased 6.4 percent this year.

"You may want to stay home and pop the cork of a bottle of Simi Chardonnay, that is down more than 10 percent in price at $23.12, and exchange Valentine greeting cards that remain fixed at $4.75," said Frater. 

According to the National Retail Association, a third of Valentine Day gift-givers choose roses to express their adoration and a dozen long-stemmed roses delivered costs $129.07, the same as last year.  A heart-shaped box of delectable Godiva chocolates is still sweet at $100, which represents a $15 increase from the 2004 price.

Here are the highlights of the 2014 "Cost of Loving Index" by Houston Asset Management

  • Flat prices:  Costs for five of the nine popular gifts tracked in the "Cost of Loving Index" were unchanged.
  • Premier: Two tickets to a first-run movie increased in price 4.7 percent to $22.
  • Unmentionable: The price of a silk designer nightie remained the same at $68.
  • Gourmet chocolate: For the sweet tooth, a beautiful heart-shaped box of Godiva chocolates is $100.
  • Lovely delivery: A dozen long-stemmed red roses delivered to your sweetie will cost $129.07; that's more than double the cost in 1990 of $65.
  • Skip the appetizer: A candlelight dinner at an elegant restaurant costs 6.4% more this year.
  • Sweet smell: The highest priced item on the index is one ounce of Chanel No. 5 perfume at $325 – the same as last year which was a 14% increase from 2012.
  • Pop a cork: A bottle of Simi California chardonnay dropped 10.56% this year to $23.12.

About Houston Asset Management Inc.
Founded in 1980, Houston Asset Management is a full-service registered investment advisory firm offering financial planning and investment advisory services.  The firm works in partnership with its clients to provide prompt and efficient solutions to problems and achievement of clients' objectives. The experience level attained by the associates at Houston Asset Management averages more than 30 years. For more information visit www.houstonassetmgmt.com.  Houston Asset Management is located at 1800 West Loop S, Ste 1980, Houston, TX 77027, (713) 629-1534. Securities offered through SagePoint Financial, Inc., member FINRA/SIPC.  Investment advisory services offered through Houston Asset Management, Inc. a registered investment advisor not affiliated with SagePoint Financial, Inc.

For more information contact:
Judi Martin, JM Group

Read more news from Houston Asset Management.

SOURCE Houston Asset Management

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