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Aussie kids cashed up after Christmas

Source: Roy Morgan Young Australians Survey, July 2013 – June 2014 (n=2,458).

Buying gifts for children is never easy. Every week a new toy, techie device or cartoon character seems to be top of the pops, while old favourites fall off the radar just as quickly. No wonder so many parents and relatives take the easy way out and give kids money for Christmas. Indeed, the latest findings from Roy Morgan Research’s Young Australians Survey reveal that almost nine out of every 10 (87%) Aussie children aged 6-13 would have received some cash for Christmas.

The amount young Australians receive varies dramatically, but anywhere from $50 up is common. Just over 22% of kids are given between $50 and $100, 20% receive between $100 and $200, and just under 22% receive $200 or more. (Note that these amounts may be the sum of more than one cash gift.)

Boys are slightly more likely than girls to be given higher-value cash Christmas presents: 24% report receiving $200 or more (compared to 20% of girls), while just 4% receive less than $20 (compared to 7% of girls).

Festive funds: how much money are Australian kids getting for Christmas?


Source: Roy Morgan Young Australians Survey, July 2013 – June 2014 (n=2,458).

A higher proportion of girls than boys (19% vs 16%) receive between $20 and $50, but once the gift’s value goes beyond $50, boys are slightly more likely to be recipients. 

Spend or save?

There are also some notable differences in what boys and girls who receive money for Christmas do with their money. Saving it in a bank, buying toys with it and saving for a big item are very popular for all kids; but whereas different kinds of console and computer games feature among the top 10 things boys do with their money, more girls opt to spend theirs on clothes and music.

How Young Australians who receive cash for Christmas spend their money


Source: Roy Morgan Young Australians Survey, July 2013 – June 2014 (n=2,140). Base: Australian children 6-13 who receive money for Christmas

Norman Morris, Industry Communications Director, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“Nobody wants to be remembered for giving an unwanted Christmas gift, especially to a child, and since money puts the choice in the hands of the recipient, giving cash is a foolproof way to avoid this.

“Indeed, cash has long been a popular Christmas present for children, but our research shows that the amounts these days are very generous, with festive windfalls of $200+ not uncommon.

“The fact that boys tend to receive more cash at Christmas than girls is puzzling. One can only hope that this is because girls are easier to buy for than boys, rather than being some kind of early precursor for salary discrepancies between the genders as they grow up!

“On a brighter note, it is encouraging to see that saving, whether in a bank or for a big item like a bicycle, is popular among all children. After all, the cost of living is only going to rise, and it’s important that kids learn to manage their money from a young age…”

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About Roy Morgan

Roy Morgan is the largest independent Australian research company, with offices throughout Australia, as well as in Indonesia, the United States and the United Kingdom. A full service research organisation specialising in omnibus and syndicated data, Roy Morgan has over 70 years’ experience in collecting objective, independent information on consumers.

Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate


25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%