• 70% of people aren’t confident about the current environment
• Spending grew, compared to the Beast from the East last year
• Clothes shops saw sixth consecutive month of falls in spending
Laura Suter, personal finance analyst at investment platform AJ Bell, comments:
“Consumer confidence has fallen to its lowest levels in the past five years, as the never-ending Brexit process causes uncertainty for many. Barclaycard’s latest data shows that 70% of people aren’t confident about the current environment, with half of Brits thinking Brexit will lead to a decline in their quality of life.
“Despite this, Brits are not stopping spending on nights out, with pubs and restaurants seeing a big boost in sales, thanks to the better weather at the start of this year compared to the Beast from the East last year. However, essential spending has dropped as people keep an eye on the pennies, once you take into account petrol spending, with Brits continuing to hunt out cheaper supermarkets and deals at the checkout.
“As Debenhams’ woes continue, it will surprise no-one that the high street continued to have a tough time in March, with spending in department stores down again, and clothes retailers seeing their sixth month in a row of falling spend.”