LV= Reports Kids Come First as Parents Increase 'Back to School' Spending to GBP709 Million

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

CROYDON, England, September 1, 2010 - LV='s new Cost of a Child study has found that parents will spend GBP709
* on 'back to school' basics including uniforms, stationery,
sportswear and winter coats as parents prepare to kit their children out for
the start of the new school year. This is equivalent to parents spending an
average of GBP122 on their children. This rises to GBP139 for secondary
school aged children, compared to GBP96 for infants. Parents living in London
spend the most preparing for their kids to go back to school at GBP158 on

Despite many families continuing to feel the squeeze in the current
economic climate, 46% of parents expect to spend a greater amount this year
on 'back to school' items than last year. When asked to consider the
financial pressures of kitting their kids out for school, 48% said they are
feeling the strain of having to spend 'excessive amounts', rising to 64%
among parents in the North East.

54% of parents are considering using low cost suppliers for back to
school items, such as supermarkets to buy basics like uniform and stationery,
and 23% are considering second-hand items, including hand-me-downs and goods
from charity shops or eBay. This rises to 70% and 41% respectively for
families in the South East.

Mark Jones, LV= head of protection, said: "It is surprising that many
parents are responding to increased money pressure this year by spending more
on back to school basics; clearly kids come first despite the downturn. And
it's even more surprising that many parents are spending more despite looking
at ways to be frugal and economise, by purchasing from cheaper suppliers such
as their local supermarket or eBay."

The annual LV= ( Cost of a Child study shows that
parents are now likely to have to shell out more than GBP201,000 on raising a
child from birth to the age of 21**. This equates to GBP9,610 a year, GBP800
a month or GBP26 a day. Education (not including private school fees) remains
the second biggest expenditure behind childcare, costing parents GBP52,881
over a child's lifetime - an increase of 4% on last year.

Mark Jones continued: "GBP122 is a lot of money for parents to spend
kitting kids out to go back to school, and that's just one small part of the
expense of raising a family. So it is important that parents try to look
beyond the short term and ensure they have suitable budgets and long term
financial plans in place. Whilst it may seem that cancelling insurance
policies or protection plans is a good way of stretching the family budget,
it's really important to keep the bigger picture in mind.

Notes to editors

* Research carried out online from 6-10 of August 2010 by Opinium
Research on behalf of LV=. Sample size 2,013 adults, with 404 of those
respondents with children aged between 5 and 16.

Please contact LV= for further details.

** Calculations by the Centre for Economics and Business Research for
LV=, January 2010

About LV=

LV= is a registered trademark of Liverpool Victoria Friendly Society
Limited (LVFS) and a trading style of the Liverpool Victoria group of

LV= offer a range of insurance ( products
including house insurance (,
motor insurance (, life insurance,
pet insurance and over 50 life insurance (

LV= employs around 4,000 people, serves over 3.8m customers and members,
and manages around GBP9.5bn on their behalf. We are also the UK's largest
friendly society and a leading mutual financial services provider.

LVFS is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority,
register number 110035. LVFS is a member of the ABI, the AFM and ILAG.
Registered address: County Gates, Bournemouth BH1 2NF.

    For further information please call:

    Linda Winder
    69 Park Lane
    CR9 1BG

For further information please call: Linda Winder, LV=, 69 Park Lane, Croydon, CR9 1BG, +44(0)20-7634-4418

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