UK’s Consumer Spending Rebounds, Grows Past Pre-Pandemic Levels in 2021 - Forex News by FX Leaders
UK's Consumer Spending Rebounds, Grows Past Pre-Pandemic Levels in 2021

UK’s Consumer Spending Rebounds, Grows Past Pre-Pandemic Levels in 2021

Posted Friday, December 31, 2021 by
Aiswarya Gopan • 1 min read

Despite the pandemic continuing to weigh on the economy, consumer spending across the UK posted a jump from pre-pandemic levels through 2021, powered especially by a sharp uptick in online shopping. Credit card spending increased by 5.9% in 2021 against the levels seen in 2019, well before the COVID-19 pandemic had affected the global economy.

While consumer spending in key areas such as hospitality and leisure did take a hit on account of the COVID-19 restrictions that were imposed several times over the past year, shoppers did end up spending more on digital entertainment and even on outdoor and sports retailers.

The uptick in consumer spending overall was also driven by higher demand for services at local food retailers and takeaways. In addition, a sharp rise in spending for home improvement after the lockdowns in 2020 also helped consumer spending tick higher through the year.

Spending on home improvements and DIY were up by 26.2% while they rose by 19.8% higher on furniture. Barclaycard also noted a 28.1% increase in spending on vets and pet retailers in 2021.

According to head of consumer products at Barclaycard, Jose Carvalho, “2021 was another challenging year, as the pandemic continued to hamper the UK economy. However, categories such as local food retailers, takeaways and digital entertainment continued to do well, thanks to Brits’ demand for convenient, local and at-home shopping experiences.”

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