NEW YORK — It looks like low-priced merchandise is still king in the junior sportswear market.

According to a recent survey conducted by Teenage Research Unlimited, teens and tweens prefer to shop for clothes at Wal-Mart, Old Navy and J.C. Penney for price and Gap and Abercrombie & Fitch for fashion.

The full details of the study, in which Teenage Research Unlimited surveyed 800 boys and girls aged eight to 18 to find out where they like to shop the most, will be revealed at Fairchild’s Teens & Tweens Conference on March 21-22 in Beverly Hills. Commissioned by WWD and its fellow publications, DNR and Children’s Business, the research found that Wal-Mart ranked number one, with 58 percent of the teens and tweens labeling the chain as their favorite place for clothes. Old Navy came in second, with 52 percent of the votes, and Penney’s came in third, with 50 percent.

Wal-Mart’s high ranking as the most-shopped store was the result of popularity among the youngest shoppers. More than 70 percent of eight-to-12-year-olds said they shopped there for clothes.

“I think Wal-Mart does a great job. It’s an entertaining place to shop, and I can see why kids would like it,” said Andrea Weiss, president of Delia’s, who will also be attending the conference. “This is especially true with the younger set who are shopping there with their family.”

When the group was asked to pick their favorite stores without thinking that price was an issue, Wal-Mart and other mass retailers did not fare as well. The world’s largest retailer dropped from first to fifth place, and more specialty stores moved up on the list. Old Navy came in at first place, with Gap and Abercrombie following.

At the conference in March, Wood will reveal all details of the research gleaned from this survey, as well as up-to-date findings about today’s youth market and forecasts on the trends to come. In addition, the conference will feature keynote addresses by Rob Smith, vice president at Macy’s West, and Robert McKnight, chairman and chief executive officer of Quiksilver.

Five interactive sessions will highlight everything relating to the teen market, including fashion, entertainment and sports, as well as mall and store development. Attendees will also hear what teens want from them in a panel discussion.

“Out of all markets, this is the most exciting demographic,” Weiss said of the profitability of the teen and tween markets. “Teens are very fashion aware and also very technology aware.”