Investment bank Piper Jaffray & Co. has released its 26th semi-annual "Taking Stock With Teens" consumer insights project, which pointed to a sequential sign of spending moderation and tempered intent to spend across multiple categories and household income levels.

"Our fall 2013 survey results suggest teens are experiencing general spending fatigue across key categories, specifically fashion related items. The absence of a clear product catalyst is a key contributing factor to diminished spending proclivity. Intent to spend also moderated, despite over two-thirds of teens signaling confidence the economy is stable to improving," Steph Wissink, co-director of research and senior research analyst at Piper Jaffray, said in a news release. "We are also observing trends that imply teens are browsing regularly on their mobile devices, shopping less frequently and engaging with brands 'on demand' on their own time. This dynamic alters the assumptions surrounding the square footage and retail inventory needed to service this target demographic. A period of rationalization may be needed."

Some findings from the survey include:

  • Teens are shopping less in single brand, vertically integrated stores and more in multi-branded, multi-category and online retail environment. Approximately 78 percent of females and 82 percent of males shop online, and respondents indicated that a mid-teens percentage of their spending is online.
  • Teens have cited "friends" as the strongest influence over their purchase decisions for the duration of our survey history, but "Internet" is quickly rising in profile. More than half of teens indicate that social media impacts their purchases with Twitter being the most important, eclipsing Facebook, followed closely by Instagram.
  • The popularity of Facebook is waning among teens with 23 percent citing it as the most important, down from 33 percent six months ago and 42 percent a year ago.
  • Teens are increasingly choosing organic food options, with 39 percent eating organics versus just 33 percent two years ago.
  • When eating out, 60 percent of teens prefer limited service restaurants, up steadily from 43 percent four years ago.

The "Taking Stock With Teens" survey is a semi-annual research project comprised of gathering input from approximately 8,650 teens with an average age of 16.2 years.

Read more about trends and statistics.

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