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Originally published November 28, 2014 at 6:46 AM | Page modified November 28, 2014 at 6:48 AM

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‘Frozen’ passes Barbie as holiday’s most popular girls toy

About 20 percent of parents plan to buy “Frozen” gifts for daughters,the National Retail Federation found in its annual study. Barbie, which was chosen by 17 percent of parents this year, had been the top pick throughout the list’s 11-year history.


Bloomberg News

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“Frozen” merchandise is the most coveted toy for girls this holiday season, knocking Barbie from the No. 1 position for the first time, according to a survey from the National Retail Federation.

About 20 percent of parents plan to buy “Frozen” gifts for daughters, the trade group based in Washington, D.C., found in its annual study. Barbie, which was chosen by 17 percent of parents this year, had been the top pick throughout the list’s 11-year history.

The results mark another setback for Mattel’s Barbie, which has lost ground to other doll brands and drawn criticism for her unrealistic body proportions. Barbie’s worldwide sales sank 21 percent in the most recent quarter. The popularity of “Frozen”-themed Halloween outfits, meanwhile, may have boosted the brand’s visibility, said Pam Goodfellow, director of Prosper Insights & Analytics, which worked on the survey.

“Barbie has been the top girls’ toy for over a decade, but it is no surprise that Disney’s ‘Frozen’ has taken the top seat as children have had it on the mind,” she said in the statement.

Even with Barbie losing status, Mattel has benefited from the popularity of “Frozen,” a Walt Disney Co. film about two royal sisters who confront an icebound kingdom. The company makes Queen Elsa and Princess Anna dolls, based on characters from the movie.

“Frozen,” released last year, is the most successful animated film of all time. It has generated almost $1.3 billion in worldwide ticket sales, according to Box Office Mojo.

The Barbie brand also faces fresh competition from a rival product. The $25 Lammily doll, a crowd-funded project that lets kids add imperfections such as acne and stretch marks, is slated to start shipping soon.



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