UK children may get £2.2bn of gifts
Parents could spend £2.2 billion on Christmas presents for their children despite the economic gloom, a poll has suggested.
Mums and dads plan to shell out on average £168 on gifts per offspring, according to the Cost of a Child survey by insurance, investment and retirement group LV=.
It found that around half (53%) of parents will spend the same or more on their children than they did last year.
A quarter (27%) are feeling under more financial pressure than they did last year, possibly reflecting the increased spend by many parents.
The poll of 546 parents with children under 18 found two thirds (62%) plan to spend less on other family members this year, to help balance their budgets.
Toddlers under four will typically have £124 spent on them and the average child aged 11 to 18 will receive £201-worth of gifts.
The survey findings suggest parents in the North East are the most generous, spending an average £226 on presents, £58 more than the national average. Those in the East Midlands will spend £151 per child.
Parents in London intend to splash out an average of £162 on their sons and daughters.
However, a third (36%) said they will need to cut back on what they spend on presents for their children. One in 10 (9%) said they had told their children not to expect as much this year to avoid tears on Christmas morning.
Mark Jones, LV= head of protection, said: "Despite the economic downturn parents are still keen to make Christmas one to remember this year. It's important that people try and look beyond the short term and also ensure that they have suitable budgets and long-term financial plans in place."