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Gift Cards and Cash Most Popular Graduation Gifts, According to NRF Survey

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For Immediate Release
Kathy Grannis or Scott Krugman (202) 783-7971
grannisk@nrf.com or krugmans@nrf.com  

Gift Cards and Cash Most Popular Graduation Gifts,
According to NRF Survey
 


Washington, May 9, 2008— Bigger isn’t always better when it comes to gift giving, especially as graduation season approaches.  According to the National Retail Federation’s 2008 Graduation Consumer Intentions and Actions survey, conducted by BIGresearch, small-in-size items like gift cards (32.2%) and cash (56.8%) will remain the most popular graduation gifts, while traditional favorites like apparel (10.8%) and electronics (11.6%) will be given by fewer. In addition to gifts, many consumers also plan to give a greeting card (35.6%) to graduates. 

According to the survey, Americans will spend $4.4 billion on graduation gifts this year with nearly one-third (32.4%) of Americans purchasing at least one gift this year. The average consumer buying graduation gifts plans to give a gift to two graduates this year and will spend an average of $52.12 on each present.  

“Graduation is a time for celebration and there is no better way to wish a graduate luck in the next chapter of their life than by giving them a leg up financially,” said NRF President and CEO Tracy Mullin. “Cash or a gift card is the perfect gift for graduates who may be moving away from home, starting a new job, or heading to college in a few months.” 

Parents and other family members not only support their graduate through their education, they will also spend the most on graduation gifts this year. Consumers between the ages of 35-44 plan on spending over $106.79 on gifts.  

About the Survey 

The NRF 2008 Graduation Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted for NRF by BIGresearch, was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to graduation. The poll of 8,347 consumers was conducted from April 29-May 7, 2008. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent. 

BIGresearch is a consumer market intelligence firm that provides unique consumer insights that are gathered online utilizing very large sample sizes. BIGresearch’s syndicated Consumer Intentions and Actions survey monitors the pulse of more than 7,000 consumers each month to empower its clients with unique insights for identifying opportunities in a fragmented and changing marketplace. 

The National Retail Federation is the world's largest retail trade association, with membership that comprises all retail formats and channels of distribution including department, specialty, discount, catalog, Internet, independent stores, chain restaurants, drug stores and grocery stores as well as the industry's key trading partners of retail goods and services. NRF represents an industry with more than 1.6 million U.S. retail establishments, more than 24 million employees - about one in five American workers - and 2007 sales of $4.5 trillion. As the industry umbrella group, NRF also represents more than 100 state, national and international retail associations. www.nrf.com.###