Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

August brings spend increase, but garden centres see only marginal growth

Published: 4 September 2018

Britons spent 4.5% more this August compared with the same month last year, maintaining the strong levels seen over the summer as a whole, according to the latest data from Barclaycard. However, garden centre businesses only saw a 0.5% growth in stark contrast to double digit growth seen in earlier months.

Essential spending increased by 6.9% year-on-year with a rise in supermarket expenditure of 5%. 'Non-essential' expenditure also saw an increase, growing by 3.4%, “indicating that customers are balancing their budgets to cover the necessities while allowing for some dicretionary spending.”

Brits are planning to reign in their spending after splashing the cash this summer, according to Barclaycard
Brits are planning to reign in their spending after splashing the cash this summer, according to Barclaycard

Having spent more than usual over the summer, 34% of consumers now say they are planning to reduce expenditure. Of these, 44% say they'll be cutting back on treats.

According to Barclaycard, “a degree of uncertainty about the future is also likely to be driving this caution.” Nearly 58% of Brits are worried that rising inflation will leave them with less money to spend each month, while a similar proportion (56%) are concerned that rising energy prices will leave them worse off.

Barclaycard director Esme Harwood said: “Brits have been feeling confident enough in their spending power to enjoy summer events and evenings out. However, it's clear they've struck a balance between spending on essentials and treating themselves.

“Looking ahead, it appears that many consumers are planning to tighten their belts and keep a closer eye on their finances after spending more than usual over summer.”

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