Consumer affairs: Children tug at purse-strings

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The Independent Online
Children may not hold the purse strings of the family budget, but they influence more than pounds 31bn worth of consumer spending each year, and their influence is not confined to toys and games. They also wield pounds 6.27bn worth of power over house purchases, pounds 1.64bn over car choices, and pounds 1.56bn over computer buys, research by Saatchi & Saatchi has found.

However, the agency says the area where children under-15 have the most financial clout is over the dinner table. When it comes to day-to-day meals, children's likes and dislikes influence what is served up to the value of pounds 12.96bn. When mothers were askedwhether they took their children's views into account, 75% of mothers said children had most influence over lower cost items like toys and breakfast cereal purchases. But 22 per cent said they would also take their children's views into account in moving house. In the area of children's clothes, their power is worth pounds 1.87bn.

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