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WASHINGTON -- Good things will come in small packages for millions of high school and college graduates this year. According to the National Retail Federation's inaugural Graduation survey, conducted by BIGresearch, gift cards (31.3 percent) and cash (58.8 percent) will be the most popular graduation gifts. In addition to gifts, many consumers also plan to give a greeting card (35.7 percent).
According to the survey, one-third of Americans will purchase at least one graduation gift this year. The average consumer buying graduation gifts plans to give a gift to two graduates this year, and will spend about $50 ($51.05) on each present. The survey found that Americans will spend $4.5 billion on graduation gifts this year.
"For students heading off to college or moving out into the real world, cash and gift cards are the ideal graduation present," said NRF president and c.e.o. Tracy Mullin in a statement. "Retailers can expect to see a nice bump in sales later this summer as students redeem gift cards and make big purchases with graduation money."
Parents and grandparents will spend the most on graduation gifts this year, with the average American over the age of 45 spending over $110 on gifts.