Total spending for the back-to-school season is expected to peak at $75.8 billion.
The average family is expected to spend more freely on school supplies this year, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual survey conducted with Prosper Insights and Analytics.
Total spending for K-12 and college is expected to reach $75.8 billion, up from last year’s $68 billion.
According to the survey, consumers with children in grades K-12 plan to spend an average $673.57 on apparel and accessories, electronics, shoes and school supplies, up from last year’s $630.36, for a total of $27.3 billion.
The analysis also found that consumers within this category plan to spend $9.54 billion on clothing, $8.27 billion on electronics, $5.12 billion on shoes and $4.37 billion on school supplies such as notebooks, pencils, backpacks and more.
Meanwhile, college age students plan to spend an average of $888.71, down slightly from $899.18 last year. However, total spending is expected to be up at $48.5 billion compared to last year’s $43.1 billion due to an increase of consumers shopping for back-to-college.
“Whether it’s laptops for class or mini-fridges for the dorm, college simply costs more than the lower grades,” says Matthew Shay, president and chief executive officer, NRF. “Some of these big-ticket items can last all four years, but when they need to be replaced it’s a bigger investment than pencils and lunchboxes. But retailers are ready to help students and parents alike stretch their dollars and make the investment in college pay off.”
The survey also found that college consumers plan to spend $11.54 billion on electronics, $7.49 billion on clothing, $6.23 billion on dorm furnishings, $5.78 billion on food items, $4.26 billion on personal care, $3.84 billion shoes, $3.53 billion on school supplies, $3.14 billion on gift cards and $2.7 billion on collegiate gear.
“Families are still looking for bargains, but there are signs that they are less worried about the economy than in the past,” says Shay. “Heading into the second half of the year, we are optimistic that overall economic growth and consumer spending will continue to improve as they did in the first two quarters of the year. We fully expect retailers to be aggressive with offering great deals both in stores and online for back to school shoppers. And retailers will keep a close eye on inventory levels as families spread out their shopping throughout the summer.”