Scrooge was a mean man. "Bah humbug!" he would say as all around him celebrated the Christmas spirit.
But the reason the Charles Dickens' tale has endured is because most people are Scrooges at heart, at least according to a new survey.
"Nearly 7 in 10 Americans (69 percent) said they would skip exchanging gifts this holiday season if their friends and family agreed to it," according to a new survey conducted online by Harris Poll. "A majority of those who spend time buying or making gifts (60 percent) said they would spend more time with friends and family if they didn't have to worry about gifts."
The survey findings suggest that financial anxiety during the holidays is taking its toll on many Americans and could be a reason for rethinking gift-giving and focusing on other priorities. Forty-three percent of those who spend money on anything related to the holidays said they feel pressured to spend more than they can afford. If they didn't have to buy gifts, 25 percent would use the money on activities with friends and family, 37 percent would pay down debt and 47 percent would save or invest.
Actually, people aren't Scrooges, they would just prefer to do something perhaps a little more wise with their hard-earned money.
So maybe this is the year we can all agree: No gifts, please.