Survey points to lacklustre Christmas spending
THE November Westpac- Melbourne Institute Consumer Sentiment survey included an additional question on plans for spending on Christmas. The results show consumers are again looking to restrain spending despite the recent strengthening in sentiment overall. Just over 35 per cent said they intended to spend less than last year; 51 per cent were planning to spend the same and 14 per cent would be spend more. That is little changed from 2012’s 35:52:13 per cent split, and both 2011 and 2010 when the split was 34:54:12 per cent. The mix is identical to 2009. All of these years were lacklustre Christmases for retailers. Overall, the 2013 reading points to another flat Christmas. But there are some differences across states and different parts of the population. Consumers in NSW are planning a much less restrained Christmas spend compared to the last four years.