December 10 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, October 10, 2013
Consumer spending in the East of England grew by 3.4% last month, according to figures based on transactions handled by Barclaycard.
The increase was driven by strong retail spending as households continued to feel more positive, with restaurants, DIY and clothing seeing particularly strong growth.
The figures were largely in line with the national picture, where overall spend was 3.0% up last month.
UK restaurant spend showing its strongest growth this year although the average spend per transaction was down, suggesting an emphasis on value.
The upturn in the housing market upturn contributed to the increased DIY spend, although garden centre spend fell for the first time since March after strong growth over the summer.
In clothing, online spend performed particularly well in September, as consumers updated their wardrobes for autumn and sought out the latest fashions online in advance of them hitting the high street.
However, overall supermarket spending for the month fell slightly amid a trend of “a little and often”, with average transaction values down but the number of transaction increasing.
Andy Wright, Barclays’ regional retail area network director, said: “Eastern region consumer spending was up again in September, growing 3.4% year-on-year.
“Shoppers are spending more but they remain cautious and we’re seeing them make smart choices to stretch the household budget – using public transport instead of the car, eating out more but spending less each visit, and shopping around supermarkets to take advantage of the best offers.
“There’s been a lot of debate over the scale of the economic recovery and whilst we’re not quite out of the woods yet, the fact that consumer confidence is at a six-year high, economic growth is up, and spending continues to grow, clearly shows that we’re on the right path.”