More South Australians plan to increase spend this Christmas
Tuesday 22 November, 2016
More South Australians will increase their Christmas budget this year, despite an overall increase in financial pressure, BankSA’s latest consumer research has found.
The research, based on a statewide survey of local consumers, shows 15 per cent intend to spend more than they did last year, while 57 per cent expect to spend the same.
A further 21 per cent cite financial pressure as a reason to cut back this year, compared to 22 per cent who opted for a tighter Christmas budget last year.
BankSA Chief Executive, Mr Nick Reade, said the increase in the number of consumers intending to spend more this year was welcome news following reported lower consumer confidence, in the recent BankSA State Monitor.
“The overall net spending result is the best net result over the past six years, suggesting a generally more optimistic picture for Christmas spending in 2016,” he said.
“If consumers do follow through with their planned Christmas budget increase, it should translate to retail sales.”
Intention to spend more this year is higher amongst the 18-34 and 55+ age groups, while males are more likely than females to forgo Christmas savings.
The 35-54 age group are less likely to spend, indicative of the financial pressures facing families in the current economic climate.
Mortgage payments, rising cost of living, a change in personal circumstances and high credit card debt were cited as contributing factors to budget pressure.
“A change in income circumstances increased sharply as a reason for those spending less this Christmas, as did changes in personal circumstances including loss of employment, health issues and family breakdowns,” Mr Reade said.
“Credit card debt levels also feature more prominently in this survey than in previous years, with many South Australians actively working to reduce debt at the expense of discretionary spending.”
Cash is the main source of Christmas spending money for all segments, particularly the 55+ age group.
In terms of mode of shopping, the younger demographics are likely to head online for their shopping fix.
“Older consumers are spending more, and they’re going about it the old fashioned way using cash from savings to avoid debt, while younger consumers are embracing online shopping,” Mr Reade said.
“Whichever way South Australians choose to shop, the sentiment is there for a more positive Christmas for retail trade this year.”