Christmas set to twinkle with retail spend reaching £91bn, says Verdict

Christmas 2014 will shine bright with consumers spending £2.3bn more than in 2013, according to the latest findings from Verdict Research.

Christmas set to twinkle with retail spend reaching £91bn, says Verdict

An improving housing market and rising consumer confidence will bring holiday cheer to the UK this Christmas, Verdict claims. While shoppers will remain cautious to some extent, an extra £2.3bn will be spent compared to 2013 – a rise of 2.6% – reaching £90.7bn (£53.6bn on non-food and £37.1bn on food & grocery).

Verdict predicts that online retailing will play a key role in Christmas shopping this year, making up £13bn of spend. Click & collect (purchase online, collect in-store) will be an essential part of this as more retailers promise a next day service – representing 12.0% of total online spend at £1.6bn.

While food is the main focus for Christmas spend, health & beauty and clothing & footwear will see the biggest spend increases: 3.7% and 3.5% respectively. Verdict highlights beauty specialists such as Boots and Superdrug as examples of retailers that should benefit from their wide ranges and more premium gifting products, while Next and Primark are expected to be the big winners in clothing & footwear.

Spend in electricals will be harder to achieve, Verdict forecasts. ‘Electricals expenditure growth will be steady if not spectacular at 2.5%,’ it says. ‘Sales growth previously derived from demand for tablets will be harder to achieve as penetration approaches maturity. However, this will be partly countered by price cuts making the new Xbox One and PS4 game consoles more affordable.’

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