2014 Back-to-School and College Sales Forecast
Back-to-school shopping is the second highest spending event in the U.S. behind the winter holidays. The National Retail Federation's (NRF) back-to-school and college surveys by Prosper Insights and Analytics reveal that most families plan to make smart decisions on purchases. More than one third of smartphone and almost half of tablet users will use their mobile devices to check prices and discounts on back-to-school items and electronics.
Many Missouri parents may start shopping the weekend of August 1 through August 3, 2014 to take advantage of the state’s annual sales tax holiday on many types of back-to-school clothing, computers and supplies.
The Prosper Insights and Analytics Back to School Survey forecasts the average Midwest family with school-aged children will spend $606.32 on back-to-school purchases this year.
Nationally, the combined average forecasted for back-to-school spending was $669.28 per family this year, up from the 2013 average of $634.78 for 12th grade and lower. Back-to-school spending for Kindergarten through 12th grade is estimated to reach$26.5 billion and back-to-college spending is expected to reach $48.4 billion dollars, totalling $74.9 billion.
The Midwest total combined spending forecast for 2014 back-to-school purchases was lower this year at $606.32 per family than the national combined average at $669.28. The types of back-to-school items Midwest parents expect to spend the most on are clothing and accessories ($220.03), electronics ($188.60), shoes ($109.53), followed by school supplies ($88.16).
According to the survey, almost one in three of Midwest parents planned to start back-to-school and college shopping early to spread out spending across a greater time period.
Average college spending nationwide is forecasted to increase to $916.48 from $836.83 in 2013 per family. College students plan to make use of last year's items and to save by shopping for Store Brand or Generic items and also by comparison shopping online. Some plan to share or borrow textbooks.
Midwest families expect to spend $882.71 on college back-to-school items, outlaying the most money on electronics and computers (33%), followed by clothing (12%), apartment furnishings (11%), food (11%), personal care (9%), school supplies (8%), shoes (7%), gift cards (5%) and collegiate branded gear or supplies (4%).
Sources: National Retail Federation, Prosper Insights & Analytics Survey