Teens Are Buying Less, Too

Teens Are Buying Less, Too

According to "Taking Stock With Teens" research survey by Piper Jaffray,  total teen spending on fashion declined nearly 20 percent on a year-to-year basis, indicating a "discretionary recession," says senior research analyst Jeff Klinefelter.

The survey results, from mall research and classroom visits across the United States, as well as 4,500 online survey responses through the national DECA organization, shows that total spending trends were weakest for young men with a 15 percent year-over-year decline versus an 11 percent year-over-year decline for young women.

While the fashion category represents 41 percent of the total teen budget in the survey, the retail research team notes this allocation is low compared with the past several years.

Klinefelter said "... (we)believe that we have not yet hit bottom... of the fashion cycle...  The current economic challenges are impacting consumers at all income levels and ages, indicated by the... low level of average planned spending in the fashion category this spring."

Key findings from the survey in the fashion, beauty and personal care, home furnishing, video game, digital media and restaurant categories also include the following:

  • The top five brands among all students in the school survey remain largely unchanged from last fall. Hollister remains the No. 1 preferred brand by teens, as ranked by mindshare. Hollister maintained its "most preferred" position among brands ranked by girls, while West Coast Brands continue to resonate as a favorite among young men.
  • The survey points to an increase in spending from the fall 2007 results among teen girls in the beauty category.
  • Overall, spending by parents was down in both the apparel and beauty categories.
  • Swedish-based IKEA was the top choice among teens followed by Pottery Barn/PB Teen in the home furnishing retailer or cataloger category.
  • Electronics represented 10 percent of total budget for young men and 4 percent for juniors this spring and 7 percent overall, up slightly from 6 percent last year.
  • Spending in the video game system category increased significantly for young men to 13 percent from 9 percent last fall.
  • 86 percent of the students who own an MP3 player indicated that they also own some form of an iPod, which is an increase from 82 percent last spring.
  • 61 percent of the students surveyed indicated they download music illegally, compared to 64 percent at this time last year.
  • 6 percent of the students surveyed indicate they own an Apple iPhone, which is double the market share found in the fall 2007 survey; 9 percent expect to buy an iPhone in the next six months.
  • Premium coffee is potentially a growing category among teens as Dunkin's Donuts appeared in the top ten brands for the first time in the school survey.
  • Approximately 45 percent of the students surveyed believe they have spent more money this year at restaurants than last year.
  • Parents indicated that annual spending on teen apparel totaled $883 versus $1,487 in the spring 2007 survey, a 41 percent decline.
  • In addition, the survey results show parents' annual spending on their apparel was down 24 percent from last year, totaling $952 versus $1,249 last spring.

For more information about the study, please visit Piper Jaffray here.


Next story loading loading..