Skip to main content

Survey: U.S. back-to-school spending to drop


Chicago U.S. consumers will spend 8.5% to 12% less this year on back-to-school items than they did last year, as parents aim to get children to wear last year's fashions, according to a survey by America's Research Group and financial firm UBS.

A total of 34.4% of parents surveyed earlier this month said they planned to spend less this year compared to last year. Parents continue to be concerned about job security, higher debt and dwindling income.

In a survey done for Reuters by America's Research and released last week, almost two-thirds of consumers said they were not willing to spend more now than they were three months ago.

In the results released Tuesday, 41.8% of consumers cited having less money as a reason for cutting back, while 40.5% cited higher debt and 8.2% cited fear of losing their jobs.

This year 33.4% of parents expect to spend more than $400. Last year the figure was 47.0%.

Almost nobody, 1.8% of those surveyed, was willing to pay full price this season.

More people said they will shop this year at Walmart. Of the 1,000 consumers surveyed, 22.3% said they would shop at the discount chain, up from 15.4% last year.

This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds