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Low consumer spending to hit Christmas trading

Retailers have been warned that trading could be slower this Christmas, as less than half of consumers (47%) are confident they will be able to spend as much as normal.

New figures from Barclaycard reveal that clothing spending fell by 0.3% in October, which the credit card provider said was “a sign of the ongoing challenges faced by retailers”.

Last month’s wet weather was partly blamed, as the British public opted to stay in rather than venture out shopping or splurge on entertainment, which also reported a 3% dip in spending.

Overall consumer spending was up by 1.5% in October, as Britons “remained cautious” ahead of Christmas. This is reflected in a 7.7% rise in discount store spending, and 61% of respondents said that they are looking for value for money from their purchases.

Barclaycard data also showed that while only one-third of consumers (31%) feel positive about the state of the UK economy, 69% are confident in their household finances and 74% in their ability to live within their means each month.

Director Esme Harwood warned: “As we head into the festive period, shoppers are feeling cautious about their finances with many expecting to spend less than normal this Christmas.

“It’s likely we’ll see consumers continue to seek out value – whether that’s through buying more in discount stores or snapping up bargains in the Black Friday sales.” 

Readers' comments (1)

  • “61% of consumers were looking for value for money in their purchases” don’t you mean 100%..... I’ve yet to meet one who isn’t looking for value!

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