Race that stops us spending – briefly
TOMORROW’S Melbourne Cup is the race that stops the nation from spending, although only for a while.
A new analysis by the Commonwealth Bank of almost 1.4 million credit and debit card transactions has discovered a 10-minute window around race time when consumer spending effectively halves.
However, overall Melbourne Cup day spending is about
12 per cent higher than a typical Tuesday, and spending on restaurants and transport has surged in the past two years, CBA’s analysis found.
CBA’s general manager of everyday accounts, Rohan Ritchie, said that the 42 per cent drop in consumer spending in the minutes before, during and after the race was unique. “It’s the only day of the year where we see this type of standstill in transaction activity,” he said.
Mr Ritchie said the majority of Melbourne Cup spending was on debit cards rather than credit cards.
“If we’re not careful the day can really add up without us even realising,” he said. Mr Ritchie said Cup Day revellers should give themselves a spending limit ahead of time, and could use apps or online banking technology to block a blowout. Wealth for Life Financial Planning principal Rex Whitford said people could prevent temptation at Cup functions by not bringing credit and debit cards with them.
“Just take cash if you can – leave the plastic at home,” he said.