ON THE CUSP

When Americans turn 21, they've got more ahead of them than a drinking binge. This year's 4-billion-strong batch already spends about $187 billion per year on consumer goods and services, an average of $45,000 apiece. And after crossing the threshold into adulthood, careers, families and even more acquisitions will become priorities for these Gen Years. Our sister publication American Demographics did analyzed the importance of 21-year-olds in 2003. Here are some of the facts:

58%
Percentage who have four or more credit cards. Nellie Mae

47%
Percentage who subscribe to wireless phone service. Telephia Inc./Harris Interactive

1-in-4 Odds
that a 21-year-old was raised by a single parent

$2,984
Average credit card debt. Nellie Mae

41%
Share of 21-year-olds who live at home with mom and/or dad

$2.2 million
Average amount a 21-year-old will spend between now and the end of his or her life. Consumer Expenditure Survey

10
Number of years until the average 21-years-old buys his or her own home

70%
Share of 21-year-olds who have a full- or part-time job

62%
Share of 21-year-olds who are non-Hispanic whites. U.S. Census Bureau

19%
Percentage of 21-year-olds who are married. CPS

MALL FREQUENCIES

In 2001 and 2002, ICSC interviewed 48,500 shoppers exiting General Growth, Rouse and Simon malls to compile data concerning the number of times they visited the mall in a three-month period and the amount of time they spent at the mall per trip. The results are somewhat predictable: teenagers between 14 and 17 years old made the most trips to and spent the most time at the mall. Young adults spent the least amount of time per visit at 70.1 minutes, and adults ages 35-44 made the fewest trips to the mall.

CHAIN REACTION

When it comes to buying drugs, consumers spend more money at chain stores such as CVS and Walgreens. With $3.45 million in average annual sales, pharmacies at these chains almost doubled the take at independent drug store pharmacies.

SO LONG SEARS?

Sears CEO Alan Lacy has indicated plans to move 200-300 of the retailer's stores out of regional malls and into larger, free-standing stores built to new Sears Grand prototype specifications. If the Sears Grand rollout pans out, many mall REITs will have to start searching for new anchors, or find ways to offer Sears a larger footprint within their malls. CBL & Associates is the most exposed among public REITs, with 91% of its malls anchored by a Sears store.

MACERICH CORNERS THE PHOENIX MARKET

Macerich recently laid down $158.5 million to lock down the Phoenix market, buying Biltmore Fashion Park from Taubman Centers. Phoenix is now one of the growing number of markets dominated by one public mall REIT. Westfield America dominates San Diego and St. Louis and Simon dominates Boston and Austin. Here's a breakdown of how the deal benefits Macerich demographically.

20 Minute Drive Time Demographics
POPULATION 5-YEAR POPULATION GROWTH AVERAGE HH INCOME
Biltmore Fashion Park 1,044,224 10.30% $61,261
Phoenix Market Average 880,812 12.60% $63,723
Macerich Portfolio Average 651,226 6.90% $70,109
Mall Industry Average 568,396 4.10% $65,500
Publicly Owned Malls 571,527 4.80% $66,852
Privately Owned Malls 563,879 3.10% $63,549
Source: Claritas; Friedman Billings Ramsey