Christmas spending tightens following Brexit vote

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Consumers have looked to tighten their purse strings this Christmas as a direct result of the UK’s vote to leave the European Union, according to one survey.

Short term loan lenders Ferratum UK have said that British residents have planned to spend 23% of their disposable income on Christmas, down from 39% in 2015.

Forecasters have attributed the significant drop to the uncertainty surrounding the UK economy, following a vote for Brexit.

According to the largest international Christmas survey of its kind, this leaves Brits far behind the highest Christmas spenders in Germany (31% of disposable household income), Lithuania (30%) and Estonia (29%).

The UK comes 9th in the list of Christmas spending, with the Netherlands set to spend the least amount of their disposable household income on Christmas this year (11%).

Whilst the UK’s spending has dropped, British consumers are the most likely to spend online this Christmas. Some 41% of all purchases in the UK will be made online, compared to the average of 25% across the other countries.

Tony Gundersen, UK Country Manager for Ferratum Group said: “This year’s Christmas Barometer result highlights that with all the uncertainty surrounding the UK economy many consumers intend to tighten their belts, which has resulted in a predicted down turn in average spending.

“This could be due to a few factors, including the ongoing ramifications of the UK’s vote for Brexit, which has already resulted in some prices increasing in store.

“However, the strong appetite for online shopping, combined with the intention to spend less this Christmas, may also be a sign of savvy shoppers in the UK seeking bargains online and taking advantage of high-profile online sales days such as Cyber Monday.”