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Coronavirus pandemic leads to surge in Christmas decorations

According to a holiday data report, the sales of string Christmas lights are up 194 percent from last year.

There have been a lot of unusual side effects from the coronavirus pandemic. Now experts say it’s driving another trend -- a huge increase in Christmas lights. 

The pandemic hasn’t given us a lot to be cheerful about which may be why people are cranking up the Christmas decorations this year.

According to a holiday data report, the sales of string Christmas lights are up 194 percent from last year. And it’s not just an increase in decorations. Retailers like Lowe’s say they had customers requesting Christmas decorations starting in August.

The high demand for holiday decorations has created shortages. 

The big retailers order their Christmas supply months ahead of time so many were placing orders right when the pandemic lockdowns hit. 

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With so much uncertainty going on, some stores decreased what they bought from years past. 

One big exception was Walmart, which ordered decorations almost a year ago, according to the Wall Street Journal. It increased its order from last year based on an improving economy, but it still wasn’t enough.

The pandemic has resulted in other trends as well.

Dollar General is reporting a big increase in wrapping paper sales while the sale of gift bags is lower. 

The company believes that is because more people are shipping gifts than exchanging in person. 

Also, there has been a bigger demand for "Do It Yourself" decorations with Michaels reported strong sales of DIY Christmas wreaths and ornaments.

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