Sixty-four Percent of Shoppers are Not Planning to Save for 2010 Back-to-School Purchases

Twenty-six percent plan to begin their back-to-school shopping before July 2010

Jun 23, 2010, 08:17 ET from

LOS ANGELES, June 23 /PRNewswire/ --®, a part of Experian, just released the results of its Back to School Shopping Forecast survey, which includes responses from 1,718 online consumers and was conducted between May 12 and June 1, 2010. Survey data reveals that many consumers do not plan to save for back-to-school shopping this year but are starting their shopping early and spending the same amount as they did last year.

Consumers plan to begin shopping early and distribute their purchases

Summer just started, but survey data reveals that consumers already are thinking about back-to-school shopping. According to survey data, 26 percent of back-to-school shoppers plan to make purchases before July 2010. Thirty-one percent plan to begin their shopping in July, and 38 percent plan to start in August.

This early launch of back to school shopping can be attributed in part to the 49 percent of back-to-school shoppers planning to spread out their purchases in order to distribute the cost over a longer period of time.

Most shoppers are not planning to save up for back-to-school purchases

Early shopping trends and efforts to make purchases over an extended period of time may be affecting consumers' short-term saving patterns. When back-to-school shoppers were asked when they planned to begin saving for purchases this year, 64 percent of consumers revealed that they are not planning to save. Nineteen percent of consumers started saving before April 2010. Seventeen percent started saving between April and July 2010.

"We are not surprised to see this new, optimistic trend of consumer frugality extend to back-to-school shopping," stated Laura Conrad, president of "Further analysis of the data supports the idea that consumers are trying to absorb back-to-school spending in their monthly budgets by starting their shopping early to distribute their purchases."

Consumers plan to spend the same amount or less as last year

While consumers are not planning to save for back-to-school shopping, they will continue to be budget-conscious when it comes to their purchases. Of the consumers who are shopping for back-to-school items this year, 45 percent plan to spend as much as they did last year and 41 percent plan to spend less, compared with last year. Fourteen percent plan to spend more this year because of the anticipated economic recovery.

"The data is clear that consumers are still focused on spending the same amount or less on back-to-school purchases this year, even with the expected lift in the recession," said Barbary Brunner, chief marketing officer at "However, instead of saving a little bit each month for back-to-school shopping and then making their purchases at once, we are seeing consumers engage in layaway-like behavior by purchasing a few items each month."

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