What the 12 days of Christmas will cost you
December 29, 2014
by Brian Wolf

Every year, the PNC Wealth Management Christmas Price Index brings "The 12 Days of Christmas" carol lyrics to life by revealing how much each item mentioned in the song's lyrics would cost in the present day. And for this year, the cost of Christmas is up 1 percent, according to PNC.

The bank calculates a Christmas Price Index based on the song "The Twelve Days of Christmas." This year, buying the whole song will set you back $27,673.21.

Most of the 12 goods and services that go into the index were unchanged, even the price of swans ($7,000), which has traditionally been the most volatile.

The big swing in prices this year came from the geese, which jumped to $360 from $210 last year. Partridges also increased in price, to $20 from $15 (who knew partridges were so cheap?).

"While there are exceptions in given years, what's most interesting about the index's history is that since the beginning, year-over-year increases have averaged 2.8 percent, which is exactly the same number as the US inflation index," according to Jim Dunigan, the chief investment officer at PNC Wealth Management.

Partridge, $20; last year: $15

Pear tree, $188; last year: $184

Two turtle doves, $125; last year: same

Three French hens, $181; last year: $165

Four calling birds (canaries), $600; last year: same

Five gold rings, $750; last year: same

Six geese-a-laying, $360; last year: $210

Seven swans' a-swimming, $7,000; last year: same

Eight maids' a-milking, $58; last year: same

Nine ladies dancing (per performance), $7,553; last year: same

Ten lords' a-leaping (per performance), $5,348; last year: $5,243

Eleven pipers piping (per performance), $2,635; last year: same

Twelve drummers drumming (per performance), $2,855; last year: same

Now, if you're anything like me, you might be wondering why in the world anyone would need or want these gifts. I mean, I'll take the gold rings, I'll rent out the maids' a-milking and I'll keep the ladies dancing (just for entertainment), but what good are any of these other things; especially when we have perfectly good gift cards available?

Merry Christmas.

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