Barclaycard said discounted ‘Black Friday/Mega Monday’ weekend in late November/early December saw spending up 10.4 per cent against 2012

• Online spending up 9.8 per cent on 2012, with in-store spending growing at a more modest 1.2 per cent
• Big boost for Christmas Day and Boxing Day spending with 13.6 per cent rise
• Average transaction values continue to fall (down 3.5 per cent) as shoppers take to the web to save money, and retailers cut prices and increase promotions

Northampton, UK, 6-1-2014 — /EuropaWire/ — Consumer spending was up 2.9 per cent over the Christmas period versus 2012, according to new data released today by Barclaycard, but shoppers continued to look for value, centring their spending on ‘discount days’ such as Black Friday and Mega Monday and using the internet to compare prices and save money.

Barclaycard, which processes nearly half of all the UK’s debit and credit card transactions, said that the heavily discounted ‘Black Friday/Mega Monday’ weekend in late November/early December saw spending up 10.4 per cent against 2012, and Christmas Day and Boxing Day, when the early sales began, saw spending up 13.6 per cent.

Outside these windows, spend growth was fairly moderate with online retailers benefitting most as shoppers spent 9.8 per cent more online this Christmas than they did last year. Online spending as a share of total spend grew 1.2 per cent to 20.5 per cent. Heavy retailer discounting, however, helped push average transaction values down 3.5 per cent.

In-store spending saw more muted growth of 1.2 per cent which, though below inflation, was an improvement on last Christmas (-0.6 per cent). Department Stores also registered positive growth for the first time since October 2012, with year-on-year spending up 1.1 per cent this year.

A Barclaycard spokesperson said:

“This Christmas we saw consumers looking for value for money, focussing their spending more on the big discount weekend of ‘Black Friday and Mega Monday’, and on the Christmas Day and Boxing Day sales.

“Whilst consumers spent more this Christmas than last, demonstrating that their confidence is up, they were determined to get the best deal – waiting for the big discount days and using the web to compare prices.

“Heading into 2014, all eyes will be on how consumer confidence holds up and in particular whether the stronger showing we saw in the second half of 2013 continues.”

Category spend

Clothing sales displayed a robust performance, posting growth of 5.6 per cent with Family Clothing spend up 9.0 per cent on last year.

Restaurant spending also continued to grow strongly (12.8 per cent), as did Hotels (5.4 per cent) as families spent more on eating out and getting away over Christmas. However, spending on Cinema and Theatre was down -0.6 per cent compared to last year due to the absence of a winter blockbuster.

Spend on essential items was also down, with supermarket spending falling 0.9 per cent on 2012, a trend seen for much of the year as household budgets continue to be squeezed. Spending on Petrol also continued to fall (3.0 per cent), as prices fell, while spending on public transport grew by 7.3 per cent.

Electronic stores experienced a slowdown compared to last year (3.8 per cent), as multiple tablet releases last year, including the iPad Mini, Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire, drove up the year-on-year comparator.

Total spend growth by category
Rising Falling
Restaurants +12.8% Cinema, Theatre & Dance -0.6%
DIY Stores +9.3% Supermarkets -0.9%
Family Clothing +9.0% Service Stations -3.0%
Public Transportation +7.3% Electronic Stores -3.8%
Women’s Clothing +5.9%
Hotels +5.4%

Online vs. offline spend

Clothing benefitted strongly from increasing online spending as the web continues to grow in popularity as a destination for clothes shopping. Spending on Women’s Clothing, Family Clothing and in online Department Stores all witnessed double-digit growth throughout Christmas, with internet purchases now making up a quarter of total spend on Family Clothing.

And echoing the booming housing market, spending at online Furniture and DIY Stores was up significantly, 29 per cent and 26 per cent respectively.

Growth in online spend
Category Growth
Women’s Clothing +41.9%
Furniture Stores +29.0%
DIY Stores +26.3%
Family Clothing +16.7%
Department Stores +16.1%

Regional spend

Northern Ireland and Scotland saw the strongest spend growth of the 12 UK regions. Wales and the South East, with spend growth of 2.2%, lagged behind. All regions saw spending above inflation (2.1% in November)

Growth in regional spending
UK regions Growth
Northern Ireland +5.7%
Scotland +5.6%
London +3.8%
North West +3.5%
Yorkshire Humber +3.3%
East Midlands +3.2%
West Midlands +2.9%
North East +2.7%
East of England +2.5%
South West +2.3%
South East +2.2%
Wales +2.2%

— Ends –

Notes to Editors:
For more information please contact Tom Foxton, Media Relations Manager, Barclaycard, on 07880 184381 / 0207 116 7285.

Barclaycard processes nearly half of all card transactions in the UK. Our spending data is based on transactions from our UK credit card business, UK payment acceptance business and spending on Barclays debit cards.

All data in this release relates to the period 1st November to 27th December 2013, and compares it with 2nd November to 28th December 2012.

About Barclaycard
Barclaycard, part of Barclays Retail and Business Banking, is a leading global payment business which helps consumers, retailers and businesses to make and accept payments flexibly, and to access short-term credit when needed.

The company is one of the pioneers of new forms of payments and is at the forefront of developing viable contactless and mobile payment schemes for today and cutting edge forms of payment for the future. Barclaycard partners with a wide range of organisations across the globe to offer their customers or members payment options and credit.

Key facts published in June 2013:

– total number of Barclaycard customers: 33.7m
– total number of Barclaycard clients: 339,200
– total payments processed: £124bn

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