- Huw Hughes |
Consumer spend has shown signs of recovery in June, with month-on-month figures showing an uplift as shoppers cautiously returned to physical stores.
Spending was still down 14.5 percent year-on-year last month, but that was the smallest decline since lockdown began back in March, according to the latest data from Barclaycard.
Spending on non-essential items fell 22.3 percent year-on-year, an improvement on the decline of 36.9 percent seen in May, as the gradual re-opening of non-essential shops saw general retailers increase by 31.7 percent.
But the journey back to normality might take a while, with over half (56 percent) of consumers continuing to avoid the shops, and three in 10 (31 percent) admitting delaying shopping over coronavirus fears - 18 percent say they are put off by crowds. Social distancing rules are providing reassurance, however, with nearly a fifth (18 percent) say they are more likely to return to stores because of these measures.
“While shoppers remain understandably cautious, slowly but surely Brits are starting to spend again,” Esme Harwood, director at Barclaycard, said in a statement. “It also seems shoppers are generally reassured by retailer efforts to take precautions and make their stores safer. As lockdown eases and Brits are encouraged to enjoy summer safely, it’s clear that people are making the most of a sense of normality again, with many of us travelling to see friends and family, eating al-fresco, and taking day trips.”
Photo credit: FashionUnited