30/11/09 - Where will you spend your money this Christmas?
Over the next few days, most of the UK adult population will spend a phenomenal amount of money preparing for Christmas, spending on festive decorations, shopping for loved ones, festive clothing and enjoying extra time with friends and family.
New data from The Co-operative Bank Credit Cards reveals the December spending trends for 2008 and highlights that the UK population is likely to spend their money in the run-up to this Christmas on more practical things such as festive food, train tickets to visit family and books.
Average transaction during December 2008 (per person)
The research shows that flush Londoners spend the most on clothing, beauty products and florists. However food-lovers from the North West spend more in restaurants that any other region in the UK.
Wales came at the bottom of the spending list for beauty products and restaurants, and people from the South West region tend to spend the least amount of money on florists, although the natural beauty of this region might have something to do with it.
The research also discovered that most people leave their Christmas shopping to the very last minute, with spending during the festive season is usually at its highest level the week before Christmas.
The Co-operative Bank recommends people to prepare and get financially fit for Christmas in order to enjoy the fast approaching festive season whilst welcoming in the New Year with their finances in order, our top tips are:-
- Evaluate your current financial position. Look at your debit, credit and savings accounts.
- Make a list of all your incomings and outgoings, such as mortgage payments, bills, food etc. Assess the money you owe and make a realistic plan to pay any debt off.
- Make a Christmas shopping list; remember that a well thought present is worth more than an expensive generic gift. Make the most of any offers available and try not to over-spend.
- Budget for the months following Christmas, and ensure you don’t overstretch yourself.
John Hughes, Director of Retail Products at The Co-operative Bank comments: “The research shows that despite the current financial climate people are still willing to spend large amounts of money during December.”
“Every year people look forward to Christmas, but we want to remind people that it is possible to enjoy Christmas and start the New Year with their finances in the best possible shape. Often people have to tighten their belt in January due to over-spending, but with a bit of forward financial planning and a little common sense people can start enjoying the New Year with their finances in check”.
For further information contact:
Alejandra Solis / Catherine Laycock
The Co-operative Financial Services Press Office
Tel: 0161 903 3808
Twitter : CFSpressteam
Notes to Editors
ISDN facilities available for broadcast interviews. ISDN telephone number 0161 833 3079
*Research carried out internally during November 2009, based on the last two Christmas spend trends on The Co-operative Credit Cards.
About The Co-operative Financial Services
The Co-operative Financial Services (CFS) is part of The Co-operative Group, which is the world’s largest consumer co-operative with around five million members, over £14 billion turnover, and core business interests in financial services, food, travel, pharmacy and funeral care. The Co-operative Group has 5,000 retail trading outlets.
Following the merger with Britannia Building Society on 1 August 2009, the new organisation is one of the largest and well diversified mutual businesses operating in both retail and corporate markets.
As part of The Co-operative Group, the new business will be characterised by its unique ethical and member reward policies and very high levels of customer advocacy.
The combined business has £70 billion in assets, 12,000 staff and nine million customers. It has over 300 high street branches, 20 corporate banking centres and a major presence in Manchester, London, Leek, Bristol, Plymouth, Skelmersdale and Stockport. There are also 1,000 face-to-face financial advisers throughout the UK.
It is the only mutual organisation that enables its members to earn financial rewards for the products they hold, as well as giving them the opportunity to have a say in how the business is ran.