Valentine’s expenses: Jewelry, a night out get most Valentine’s Day dollars

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Most consumers buy candy and cards, but that’s a small portion of the $17 billion.

By Todd Martin

Flowers, cards and candy have been keeping men out of trouble on Valentine’s Day since Charles, Duke of Orleans, penned the first note to his wife in 1420 – “I am already sick of love my very gentle Valentine…”

It’s not exactly Hallmark material these days, but that note kicked off a holiday that today is a nearly $17 billion industry, according to the National Retail Federation’s 2014 Valentine’s Day spending survey.

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