Amount spent on holiday gifts to employees and clients highest in four yearsTREVOSE, Pa., Nov. 27, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Advertising Specialty Institute® (ASI) today released results from its annual corporate gift-giving survey showing spending on employees and clients is the highest it's been in four years. Companies giving gifts told ASI they plan to spend an average of $44.98 for employees and $33.92 for clients and prospects this holiday season, compared to $41.70 and $26.48, respectively, given last year. Data shows buyers are not expecting to give out as many items, but are spending more on the items they do give. Gift cards (42.4%), cash bonuses (29.2%), food and beverages (27.5%) and apparel (11.2%) are the top gifts responding companies plan to give in 2013. The popularity of promotional products like food and beverages – such as food baskets or wine bottles branded with a company's logo – rose nearly nine percentage points over last year. Promotional products are branded items like pens, mugs and T-shirts given away by companies, organizations and non-profits to advertise their company, brand or event. "Thanking employees for a job well done or expressing appreciation to loyal clients with a thoughtful gift is a smart business decision even the smallest company can make," said ASI CEO Tim Andrews. "The fact that companies are giving more this year speaks directly to the improved economy, but corporate generosity pays dividends all year long through repeat business or harder working employees." According to ASI's 4 th annual Corporate Gift Spending Survey, nearly two-thirds of responding companies said they will include their company logo either on their gift or on its packaging, proving the continuing popularity of branding. Most surveyed companies said they give gifts as a way of expressing appreciation (67.7%), developing relationships (59.3%) and generating goodwill toward their company (56.6%).