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by DelMarvaNow.com

New York – Parents have a new goal this back-to-school shopping season: Buy their kids the name brands they want without spending like it’s 2007. After the recession began, cost-conscious consumers sought out the cheapest shirts and shoes they could find at merchants like Walmart and Target to keep their budget in check. But these days, value is the name of the game.

Shoppers who are just as concerned about style and quality as price are flocking to factory outlets, where they can snag Gap, Nike, Vans and other designer clothes and accessories for 25 to 70 percent off. In fact, a quarter of parents said they have done the bulk of their back-to-school shopping at factory outlets and discount stores, compared with just 16 percent at malls, according to the American Express Spending and Saving Tracker.

“I still want the brand names,” said Lisa Santa, who took a break from her vacation recently to hit the Jersey Shore Premium Outlets to find a first-day-of-school outfit for her third-grade daughter. “So I came here hoping to get lower prices on quality stuff.”

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