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Nearly 35 per cent of youth in urban centers of India spend Rs 5,000 per month on clothing alone, says a just concluded survey by apex industry body ASSOCHAM. The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) interacted with 2,000 youngsters in the age group of 13-21 years to evaluate their apparel purchasing tendencies in 10 cities (200 respondents in each city) of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Jaipur and Chandigarh. The survey was carried out during March-June. The sample included equal number of male and female respondents. Half of the total sample included youngsters whose both parents are employed and half whose single parent was working. About 35 per cent of respondents with both parents working said they upgrade their wardrobe every month and usually spend around Rs 5,000 per month on apparels. Almost each one of these said they shop in branded stores only as they care more about brand and less about price. Nearly 400 respondents said they spend around Rs 3,500 to Rs 4,000 every month on clothes and shop everywhere be it the traditional shopping markets, specialty stores, high-end designer stores, retails chains and the branded stores. Remaining said they spend over Rs 2,500 each month to buy new clothes to stay ahead in their peer group. Interestingly almost 60 per cent of all the respondents said they have cluttered closets full of clothes they seldom or never wear which makes getting dressed up stressful and time consuming. Today teens exhibit a strong desire for individuality in their self-expression and end up spending a major chunk of their allowance on clothes, said secretary general of the chamber Mr D.S. Rawat. Majority of the respondents (65 per cent) said they prefer shopping along with their friends, about 25 per cent of them said they prefer shopping alone and a meagre 10 per cent said they prefer companionship of family to go for shopping. Besides, the respondents also said that most of the shopping was done during the evening hours after they were through with their school/college classes or on weekends. Of the 1,000 respondents whose single parent is working 30 per cent said they spend maximum of Rs 3,000 on buying clothes in a month. About 55 per cent of this group said they spend Rs 2,000 to Rs 2,500 per month to upgrade their wardrobe and just 15 per cent said they spend around Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,500 on clothes every month. Majority of the respondents said they emulate and look up to their favorite cinestars, sportsmen and ramp models for latest fashion ideas, highlights the ASSOCHAM survey.

Teenagers in Delhi were ahead of their counterparts in other cities as 55 per cent of them said their budget for shopping for clothes exceeds Rs 5,000 every month. About 25 per cent said they splurge between Rs 2,500 to Rs 3,500 on clothes every month and about 20 per cent of Delhiities said they spend between Rs 1,500 to Rs 2,000 on apparels per month.

An interesting aspect that emerged out of the survey was that most of the school going youngsters said they swear by branded stuff only whereas, majority of the respondents aged 18 and above said they buy whatever fits their budget and are not really that brand conscious and prefer shopping mostly at traditional markets. Fashion conscious teens be it the girls or the boys are becoming more concerned about their appearance and are taking what they wear more seriously than ever before, said ASSOCHAM secretary general. Significantly, most of these purchases happen impulsively while browsing merchandise in stores. Apart from this, the survey also reveals that teenagers in India embrace whats new and racy and strongly prefer wearing modern clothes and favor name brands. Nike is the most sought after sportswear brand among the youth as 25 per cent of all the respondents approved of the brand reasoning its quality control. Adidas (20 per cent) ranked second in the sportswear brand category. Rest of the respondents said they prefer Reebok, Puma, Woodland and Fila. Among the casual wear Levis was the most preferred brand followed by Lee, Wrangler, Flying Machine, Pepe Jeans London, Diesel, Spykar, K-Lounge and Numero Uno Jeanswear. Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM)