The amount of pocket money paid to the nation's children went up seventeen per cent last year, according to the British bank Halifax.

Halifax found that parents are now giving their children on average £8.37 a week, with boys being paid about five pounds more than girls. This rise in the money children receive was four times the rate of inflation, the measure of how much the price of goods in shops rises in a year.
"It appears that children are certainly getting a good deal when it comes to pocket money levels, which have increased well above the rate of inflation over the last year," said Cheryl Millington, head of customer services at Halifax.

Welsh children received the most at £13.51 a week, with those in the South West of the UK being given just £4.87. Children in the capital saw their weekly money go up 41 per cent to £10.22 in 2004. Unsurprisingly, Halifax found that younger children receive more money, but while boys receive more money in general, girls in the 12-16 age group get more money than boys of the same age. But things are not as easy as they seem for the nation's youth as more and more children have to cry for their money.
"Many more children now have to do chores to earn their food, as parents try to teach them the value of money. We are also beginning to see a generation of young consumers who are starting to take control of their own earning potential, spending and savings habits," Ms Millington noted. While last year fewer than one child in twelve had to work for their money, now a massive 55 per cent are made to do jobs around the home to receive their allowance.

Halifax, which has been running its pocket money survey since 1995, also looked at how children are spending their money. It found that money is going to a mix of traditional and 21st Century sources. While two out of five children are spending money on sweets, chocolate, and crisps; more than two in three now own a laptop computer. Almost half of these pay their own bills, with 80 per cent of children's mobile phones set up on a pay-as-you-go basis.
More than half children shop online, with CDs the most popular purchase followed by computer games and DVDs/videos. Almost three quarters of children also spend cash on going out and drugs.