Two weeks in the UK - Christmas is coming
Three weeks today and Christmas will all be over and we will be tucking into the turkey leftovers and hitting the Boxing Day Sales.
A recent report from TNS Omnibus suggested that consumers are bracing themselves for another year of bargain hunting.
It predicted that the biggest shoppers for Christmas food and drink will be northerners who are forecast to spend £244, followed by Londoners who will spend £242 against the national average of £210.
However the report showed two thirds would look for the best offers and cut back on the size of their baskets to save cash.
The research suggested 53% of shoppers were looking to Tesco for their Christmas food shop and that the busiest time will be 18th to 22nd December for those shoppers looking to do their big shop.
40% of shoppers will set a budget and stick to it according to TNS.
Sticking to budget will be top of mind for many shoppers as the economic forecast has continued to look more than gloomy.
November’s Consumer confidence monitor from market research company GfK showed only a one point rise to -31, ten points down on confidence levels a year ago amidst recession fears and concerns over the Eurozone with Nick Moon, managing director of GfK NOP Social Research, describing the outlook as “very gloomy”.
The Chancellors Autumn statement also brought little Christmas cheer to the market.
However one of the surprise rushes came during the public sector strikes last week with a number of stores and shopping centres reporting big uplifts in sales as striking workers and parents forced to take a day off from work because of school closures took the opportunity to hit the shops.
Experian Footfall reported a rise of almost 40% year on year on the day although shoppers last year were besieged by snow so the numbers will be a little skewed.
Christmas has most definitely now begun.