Where can I find purchasing power of high school students and consumers?

Mintel Oxygen has good reports on this topic

Occasionally I have had questions from   people researching the disposable income or purchasing power of high school students.  This kind of information is typically hard to find, as most of the sources that I know of that track spending and income start at the age of 18.  However, a quick search in Mintel Oxygen yields reports that can be used to address this question.

  • The most recent discussion on the topic can be found in the Marketing to the iGeneration – U.S. May 2018 report.  There you will find an entire section on spending power of tween/teens (age 11-23).  Search Mintel for iGeneration to find this one.
  • The Marketing to Teens – U.S. – May 2015 report also has relevant information as does the slightly dated Spending Habits of the Teen Consumer – U.S. – August 2011 .
  • Mintel also has specific consumer reports, such as the iGen Beauty Consumer, that will give spending and purchasing trends for specific consumer product categories.



I updated this post on 6/26/2018.  The sources mentioned below were what I recommended when I originally posted this in 2010.  The reports are still available via Mintel, but more recent information is recommended from the reports above.   I’ve left the descriptions below, as they may give you ideas for additional keywords to search for in Mintel or other databases.

Spending Power of the Teen Consumer – US – April 2008

The description from Mintel is as follows:

Teen consumers are an important part of the U.S. economy, as this is the group most likely to embrace new technology and show the most enthusiasm for current trends that later filter into the mainstream. Teens make purchases to define themselves and to create an identity of their own making. Therefore, the products and services that are best geared for teens are those that reflect a certain attitude or statement about the wearer or user.

This report contains actionable suggestions for companies interested in learning about:

  • How teen financial power has grown (and declined) and how it shifts when explored and filtered by factors such as ethnicity, household income and age.
  • How teens become more realistic about money, establish savings plans, and become wary of debt as they grow older.
  • How the reversal in teen spending from a long period of growth ending in 2003 to decline in 2007 may have been a leading indicator for current economic weakness-and a guide for what will happen in 2008-12.
  • How girls are more active shoppers than boys in most categories but both genders demonstrate that they are more conscious of what they look like and where they shop than previous generations.
  • Which electronics are most popular among today’s teens, and why.
  • How, more than past generations, today’s teen consumers are concerned about connectivity; they need to be connected to friends and family, wherever they are.
  • How new media competes against traditional media for teens’ attention, and which methods have experienced success.

Teens and Finance – US – January 2009

The description from Mintel is as follows:

This report examines the use of financial services among teens as well as their knowledge levels and attitudes toward financial matters. It focuses on the key questions facing the financial services industry as it seeks to establish relationships with teens. Some of the questions that we will look at here include:

  • What is the level of teens’ usage of financial service products?
  • How knowledgeable are teens are about financial matters?
  • What are their attitudes toward saving, spending, and debt?
  • What differences exist in this market by age group, gender, and ethnicity?
  • What are the most effective channels in marketing to teens?
  • How has the worsening economic situation in the U.S. affected this group?

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