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Who Spent the Most on Black Friday? You Might Be Surprised

The tried and true stereotype that women shop more than men may have been shattered this Black Friday, at least when it comes down to adding up how much they spend.

A new study projects that men doled out the most dough during the shopping extravaganza.

The survey, commissioned by the media agency Mindshare, found that men planned on spending up to 69 percent more than women during Black Friday and/or Cyber Monday shopping events. Mindshare consulted 779 consumers, and was roughly split between men and women, said Joe Migliozzi of Mindshare.

Americans Spend Record $3 Billion on Black Friday Sales 1:33

Boys Will Be Buyers

The study discovered that men were aiming to spend $417, on average, on Black Friday and/or Cyber Monday, while women anticipated spending an average of $247.

"I love how the stereotypes [around gender and shopping behavior] were flip-flopped," said Migliozzi. "The information about men was eye popping, but actually, it makes sense that they're spending more."

Men spend more because what they want is actually more expensive.

Note the key difference in wording here: Men aren't necessarily shopping more, but spending more. What it comes down to is their predilection for more expensive items — largely electronics, gaming gear, computers, and high-end audio products, added Migliozzi.

Shoppers take part in Black Friday Shopping at a Target store in Chicago
Shoppers take part in Black Friday Shopping at a Target store in Chicago. REUTERS/Jim Young

Electronics, Video Games Versus Clothing, Toys

According to the research, 57 percent of men said that electronics was the number one spending driver for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, followed by video games (48 percent). Clothes came in at 44 percent.

Women are also quite interested in purchasing electronics, with 53 percent saying that was their top shopping priority during the sales events. But video game technology, which can get pretty pricey, wasn't on their list of must-buys, and clothes was their number one, with 66 percent of women stating this was their biggest spending driver.

Related: As Millions Hit the Shops, Will This Be the Biggest Black Friday Ever?

Women also noted home goods such as bedding as their main shopping incentive (44 percent), while for men, this category didn't make the cut. Furthermore, women showed more interest in buying toys than men, though not by much (45 percent of women versus 43 percent of men).

Still, it all adds up to show men shelling out much more money.

On Black Friday, women tend to spend less money and buy gifts for more people.

Benjamin Glaser, an editor at DealNews, wasn't shocked that men are expected to spend more than women, adding that this is typically how it goes. But what did impress Glaser was just how much more men plan to spend.

"I am surprised that this study found such a huge difference," he said.

Decking Out Their Man Caves?

Many consumers take advantage of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the surrounding days of deals to buy gifts for others in advance of the quickly approaching holidays.

But these spend-happy men may be seizing the bargains on costly items for less generous purposes.

Related: A Look at What to Buy and When

"In past years, our reader survey found that men shop for fewer people on Black Friday — and buy more for themselves," said Glaser. "So maybe the difference in spending is a reflection of men making major yearly purchases for themselves on Black Friday, while women really embrace it as a time to kick off holiday gift buying. Women manage to spend less money, and buy gifts for more people."

A shopper looks at items on sale inside of a JC Penney store during Black Friday sales in New York
A shopper looks at items on sale at a JC Penney store during Black Friday sales in New York. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Hey, Big Spender Millennials

Mindshare's study also considered the ages of consumers and found that while millennials won't be leading the pack of spenders this Black Friday/Cyber Monday, they won't be far behind.

Consumers aged 35 to 54 plan on spending the most, with an average of $356, while millennials are anticipated to spend an average of $338 — considerably more than people 55 and over, who plan to spend around $244.

With plenty of stores offering online deals, millennials won't be camping out overnight for door-busters.

Millennials are likely to seize the days of sales in part because they're "very deal savvy," Glaser says.

Chances are high, though, that millennials won't be making up much of the population lined up for door buster deals.

"Millennials, like most other generations, will hit the Black Friday sales, but [are] less likely to camp out in tents waiting to purchase whatever hot tech deal is big this year," said Erin Lowry, author of Broke Millennial: Stop Scraping by and Get Your Financial Life Together.

"Instead, millennials will probably surf most sales at home on phones or computers. Even with Cyber Monday, plenty of stores are still offering online deals during Black Friday — so why bother going to a mall?"