NEWS3 June 2015

Spending down in all consumer sectors except food

News UK

UK — Shopping habits started in the recession appear to have become entrenched, with consumers more likely to have spent less in every area apart from in-home food, according to Mintel’s British Lifestyle report.


Despite 2014 having the fastest rate of economic growth in the UK since 2007 more frugal shopping behaviour remains.

The top three areas that UK consumers cut their spending on in 2014 were: eating out, 36% said they spent less over the past year; alcoholic drinks out of the home, with 35% spending less; and leisure and entertainment, 34% said they cut their outgoings.

The only area to see a rise was in food to eat in the home – one in six ( 17%) said they spent more compared with one in seven ( 14%) who claimed to spend less.

Ina Mitskavets, senior consumer and lifestyles analyst at Mintel, said: “The savvy shopping habits that people have adopted during the slowdown are deeply ingrained and there is still a lot of ground to make up. Households have not yet seen a sustained period of earnings growing above prices in the shops, meaning that for many Britons the recovery is yet to trickle down to their pockets. Demand for products and services that could be considered luxuries or has proved to be weak.”

However higher earners have, understandably, been less affected by this trend and have helped push up overall consumer expenditure.

Mintel’s research shows that total spending in 2014 reached £1.14 trillion, marking a 6.1% rise on 2013. The company expects all the individual consumer expenditure markets covered by its research to rise in value between 2014 and 2019, supported by increased consumer confidence and spending. Mintel estimates UK consumer expenditure to rise by 27% in the next five years to reach £1.44 trillion in 2019.

Mintel’s British Lifestyles report tracks the activity of all consumer sectors in the UK.