Index shows weak growth in consumer spending prior to Budget

Index shows weak growth in consumer spending prior to Budget

Visa’s Irish Consumer Spending Index shows that spending in Ireland went up at a slower rate last month, ahead of the Government's Budget being announced.

The index, which measures spending by cash, cheques and electronic payments, shows that compared to a year earlier, expenditure rose by 1.5% year-on-year, down from +2.2% in August.

Although growth has now been recorded in each of the past 19 months, the latest rise in household expenditure was the weakest recorded since March 2018.

Increases in spending were seen across both Face-to-Face and eCommerce in September. The high street registered growth for the 13th successive month of 1.1% year-on-year, less than that recorded in August, 2.1%.

A solid annual increase of 2.3% in online spending was also seen in September, although the rate of growth slowed for the fifth successive month and was the slowest since January of this year.

    Change in spending in the eight categories of Visa’s Irish Consumer Spending Index

  • Household Goods, +9.5%
  • Hotels, Restaurants & Bars, +8.2%
  • Recreation & Culture, +4.5%
  • Transport & Communications, +3.2%
  • Food, Beverages & Tobacco, +2.8%
  • Clothing & Footwear, -2.2%
  • Health & Education, -2.9%
  • Miscellaneous Goods & Services, -4.0%

Philip Konopik, Ireland Country Manager, Visa said: “The weak growth in spending recorded in September marks potential concern from Irish consumers, which aligns with the recent drop in consumer confidence reported elsewhere - amid factors such as the recent Budget announcement and ongoing Brexit negotiations.

"While it is positive to see sectors such as Household goods, Hotels, Restaurants & Bars and Recreation & Culture post continued and robust growth, it is slightly concerning to see other categories such as Clothing & Footwear record a third month of contraction.”

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