The economic recession has caused many Americans to re-evaluate their spending habits in the wake of an uncertain job market.



Financial reports released last week showed that the national savings rate jumped to 6.9 percent in May, the highest it’s been in 15 years. On the flip side, spending rose by just 0.3 percent.

The economic recession has caused many Americans to re-evaluate their spending habits in the wake of an uncertain job market.

Financial reports released last week showed that the national savings rate jumped to 6.9 percent in May, the highest it’s been in 15 years. On the flip side, spending rose by just 0.3 percent.

Common sense would say that those trends could cause trouble for fireworks vendors this Fourth of July holiday season. If more people are looking to hold onto their hard-earned cash, they may be less likely to drop a good amount of dough for items that sparkle for a few minutes before being dumped in a trash can.
But what does common sense know?

“We seem to be right on schedule with where we were at last year,” said John Lair, who manages at Crazy Debbie’s fireworks stand in Pittsburg. “It doesn’t seem like people are cutting back much on fireworks.”

Fireworks sales began on Saturday and there are still four days of shopping available before July 4, so it may be too early to gauge what this year’s fireworks sales will ultimately total. One thing is certain, however: fireworks vendors, despite the recession, have faith in Americans’ passion for celebrating the Fourth.

“I don’t think the recession will hurt sales,” said Mick Marietta, CSO of Jake’s Fireworks’ Pittsburg office. “People only get to celebrate the Fourth of July once a year.”

Marietta said that while he knows Americans are cutting back on what they spend, he expects many will loosen the purse strings to enjoy Independence Day.

“I think when you start cutting back on things,” he said, “you probably cut back on everyday things. You usually don’t cut back on specialty things, which is how I would describe fireworks.”

Travis Thrush, of Arma, said buying and shooting off fireworks is a major part of the celebrating the Fourth, which is why he’ll do what he can to celebrate in style.

“I’m from around Leavenworth, grew up near a military base, so the Fourth has always been real important to me,” he said. “I think for the Fourth, you can let go a little and spend a little extra for fireworks. It’s a fun time, plus the kids always love it.”

Along with the pride factor that goes along with celebrating the Fourth, another aspect of this year’s holiday that may help vendors is the fact that July 4 is a Saturday.

“Since it’s not during the week, I think you’ll see more families getting together to celebrate,” Marietta said. “You’ll have some big parties going on and people will buy fireworks to have at those parties.”