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Piper Jaffray (NYSE: PJC) has completed its 22nd semi-annual "Taking Stock With Teens" survey, which indicates improving spending at the upper-income level and continued weakness for average-income teens. Also, the survey results reflect a preference by teens for value-priced merchandise at all levels of household income, but not necessarily the lowest cost, as teens report a willingness to spend on higher-priced, differentiated merchandise.

"Our Fall 2011 survey provides further evidence of a bifurcated recovery: upper-income teens are feeling more confident and willing to spend on fashion, while average-income teens continue to rationalize budgets," said Jeff Klinefelter, director of research and senior research analyst at Piper Jaffray. "With macroeconomic uncertainty likely to continue to weigh on consumer spending, we believe fashion and overall product 'newness' can drive sales growth for select retailers and brands."

Key findings from the survey in fashion, beauty and personal care, restaurants, digital media and video game categories include the following:

The "Taking Stock With Teens" survey is a research project comprised of gathering input from approximately 5,700 students with an average age of 16.2 years. Teen spending patterns, fashion trends, and brand and media preferences were assessed through visits to geographically diverse high schools in 11 states, and through an online survey of a wider group of teens from 32 states. The survey is conducted in partnership with DECA (an international association of high school students).

About Piper Jaffray
Piper Jaffray is a leading middle-market investment bank and asset management firm serving clients in the U.S. and internationally. Proven advisory teams combine deep product and sector expertise with ready access to global capital. Founded in 1895, the firm is headquartered in Minneapolis and has offices across the United States and in Hong Kong, London and Zurich.

Piper Jaffray & Co. does and seeks to do business with companies covered in its research reports. As a result, investors should be aware that the firm may have a conflict of interest that could affect the objectivity of this report. Investors should consider this report as only a single factor in making their investment decisions. This report should be read in conjunction with important disclosure information, including an attestation under Regulation Analyst Certification, found at the following site:

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SOURCE: Piper Jaffray

Piper Jaffray
Terry Sandven