Millions of UK shoppers to rein in Christmas spending on final day, data finds | retail industry | Daily News Byte


Millions of shoppers are expected to rein in their spending on the last day of Christmas shopping, with eight in 10 adults planning to buy fewer gifts, according to official data.

Shoppers also plan to buy less expensive gifts to counter a life crisis in which rising prices are eating into the spending power of the average household at a record rate.

The Office for National Statistics said 79% of adults planned to cut back on gifts and 73% said the gifts they bought would be cheaper than last year.

Expensive food and dining out will leave many households with cash for basics like gas central heating.

Sixty-two percent of respondents said they would buy less expensive food, while 58% would turn their backs on takeaway or restaurant food. For 56% of adults cutting back on alcohol and food for Christmas was a priority.

The figures come as high street numbers and a steady decline in online shopping force many retailers to bring forward their traditional January sales.

Discounts are already widespread as bad weather and strikes add to the problems facing most families whose wages have fallen behind inflation.

The headline rate of consumer price inflation fell slightly to 10.7% in November from 11.1% in the previous month, but is well ahead of most pay deals, which average 4%, and annual growth in total income, which averages 6%.

Only nine in 10 (92%) adults report that their cost of living has increased compared to a year ago when inflation was 5.4%. Worryingly for the government, 76% of respondents reported an increase in their cost of living compared to a month ago.

Earlier this week, shopper tracking agency Springboard said footfall to UK high streets last week was below a fifth of pre-pandemic levels, and about 1% lower than last year when the Omicron variant and some government restrictions hit hard. A quiet end to the year.

Pubs, restaurants and bars saw a 50% drop in footfall this weekend, despite the men’s football World Cup final on what should be one of the busiest weekends of the year, according to the Night Time Industries Association.

Last week’s cold weather forced many people to abandon frugal use of their home heating, leading to a drop in the number of people telling the ONS they did, down from 63% at the start of the month to 56%. last week.

Still, the number of respondents who said they were sometimes, rarely, or never able to stay comfortably warm in their home in the past two weeks rose from 23% earlier this month to 24%.


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