Buying All The Presents In The '12 Days Of Christmas' Would Cost A Record $101,119

milk maids blondeYou can get Maids-a-Milking at minimum wage

Photo: throw her in the water via Flickr

Every year for the past 28 years, PNC Wealth Management has released a Christmas Price Index that calculates the total cost of all the presents in the “Twelve Days of Christmas”–you know, the maids a-milking and swans a-singing and everything else from your true love.Not only is it a hilarious exercise, it’s a pretty revealing look at the state of the economy.

This year, a generous giver would have to spend $101,119.84 to buy all 364 items mentioned in the carol, a 4.4% increase compared to last year.

The actual index price for 2011 came out to $24,263.18, a 3.5% increase over last year. That’s a far more modest jump than the 9.2% price spike between 2009 and 2010.

This year’s Christmas index was nearly on par with the government’s Consumer Price Index, which grew 3.9% over the last 12 months, PNC said.

Notably, PNC excludes the cost of the swans-a-swimming from its annual index since they are subject to huge price swings. This year the cost of swans rose by 12.5%, almost double last year’s rise of 6.7%, to $6,300.

One interesting finding: the Christmas index would be at $39,860.06 if the gifts were purchased online, proving that the “Cyber Monday” hype isn’t all it’s cracked up to be–and that live birds are very expensive to ship.

12 Drummers drumming would cost 2,629.90

Cost in 2010: $2,552.55

% change from 2010: 3%

Cost on the internet: $1,620

Source: PNC Wealth Management

11 Pipers Piping would cost 2,427.60

Cost in 2010: $2,356.20

% change from 2010: 3%

Cost on the internet: $2,200

Source: PNC Wealth Management

10 Lords-a-Leaping would cost $4,766.70

Cost in 2010: $4,766.70

% change from 2010: 0%

Cost on the internet: $13,373.55

Source: PNC Wealth Management

9 Ladies Dancing would cost $6,294.03

Cost in 2010: $6,294.03

% change from 2010: 0%

Cost on the internet: $8,322.55

Source: PNC Wealth Management

8 Maids-a-Milking would cost $58

Cost in 2010: $58

% change from 2010: 0%

Cost on the internet: $337.92

'As the only unskilled laborers in the PNC CPI, the price for the eight Maids-a-Milking is represented with the minimum wage. They received no increase in pay in 2011 as the Federal minimum wage did not rise for the second straight year. With the minimum wage flat at $7.25 per hour, hiring the maids this year will not increase labour costs.'

Source: PNC Wealth Management

7 Swans-a-Swimming would cost $6,300*

Cost in 2010: $5,600

% change from 2010: 12.5%

Cost on the internet: $10,412.50

*Excluded from Christmas Price Index

Source: PNC Wealth Management

6 Geese-a-Laying would cost $162

Cost in 2010: $150

% change from 2010: 8%

Cost on the internet: $1,386.60

Source: PNC Wealth Management

5 Golden Rings would cost $645

4 Calling Birds would cost $519.96

Cost in 2010: $599.96

% change from 2010: -13.3%

Cost on the internet: $520

Source: PNC Wealth Management

3 French Hens would cost $150

Cost in 2010: $150

% change from 2010: 0%

Cost on the internet: $300

Source: PNC Wealth Management

2 Turtle Doves would cost $169.99

Cost in 2010: $100

% change from 2010: 25%

Cost on the internet: $445

'The cost of feed as well as availability sent the Two Turtle Doves soaring 25.0 per cent (still weaker than the 78.6 per cent in 2010) to $125 but the Three French Hens stayed even at $150.'

Source: PNC Wealth Management

A Partridge in a Pear Tree would cost $184.99*

Cost in 2010: $161.99

% change from 2010: 14.2%

Cost on the internet: $242.44

*The partridge costs $15 and the pear tree costs $169.99

'The Partridge increased 14.2 per cent to a still affordable $15, although its home, the Pear Tree, increased 13.3 per cent to $169.99, bucking the national trend of declining house prices.'

Source: PNC Wealth Management

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