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Weak pound and rising inflation push clothing spend to five-year low

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Guardian 13/2/17

'Britons slashed their spending on new clothes and shied away from the high street in January as they juggled Christmas debts and rising living costs.

Spending increased by a meagre 0.4% in January, according to Visa’s consumer spending index. The year-on-year growth rate was a five-month low, which followed December’s robust 2.5% increase. The spending tracker highlighted a grim period for clothing retailers, with the amount Britons spent on their wardrobes dropping 3.8% – the biggest decline since April 2012.

“Clothing and household goods retailers experienced a particularly difficult January,” said Visa UK and Ireland managing director Kevin Jenkins. “The traditional start of year sales did little to lift clothing spend, which saw the biggest drop in nearly five years. The high street as a whole suffered a disappointing month too, with spend falling at the quickest rate in four years.”

It came as the BRC-Springboard footfall tracker showed shopper numbers dropped 1.3% last month. “The drop in footfall across the UK’s bricks and mortar destinations in January may be a sign of tougher things to come in 2017,” said Springboard analyst Diane Wehrle. “Of significance is that footfall is correlating closely with retail sales, with all sales results published so far showing a poorer performance in January [2017] than in January 2016.”

Last month official figures showed Britain’s retailers suffering a surprise end-of-year slump in sales, which analysts suggested was a sign that rising prices since the Brexit vote are starting to hurt people’s spending power. Sales volumes dropped 1.9% in December although for the final three months of the year sales were still ahead 1.2% on the previous quarter.'

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Almost on topic but on average on-line shopping doesn't seem to have inevitable value anymore in a lot of cases.  

As if the benefits of low warehousing costs etc aren't being passed on quite so much.  For example some shoe outlets have mall prices the same as on-line and similarly for some clothing outlets - add in delivery and it sometimes costs more.  Maybe the the high streets are fighting back or maybe on-line is being used to subsidise the high street etc which in turn helps to keep rents up and so on.

Part of the subsidised cheap labour deal?

Edited by billybong

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Excess of stuff.......so much quality little used clothing about, your friends will think you 'smart' or 'cool' perhaps, if you tell them you are wearing a quality wool jacket that cost £10 not the £40 polyester high street version of inferior quality, you crazy?....Also there is no longer a fashion, people as individuals wear what they deem suits them, what they want and how they want to, not what others say they 'should' be wearing because some magazine or celebrity says so, also many more wear a uniform for work.......anyway who dresses up, goes to balls and cocktail parties now, fancy hat anyone, like brand new a fiver.;)

Edited by winkie

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I've said this to a few people on twitter.

If they push up the prices  any more ( a bit like housing ) most people will stop buying or find a cheaper alternative.

My wife and I are already shopping Aldi/Lidl and find the quality of the stuff equal to or better than tesco/sainsburys.

We've cut our food shopping bill down 30% so a 5% rise is meaningless to us now.

Many will be doing the same.

 

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1 minute ago, Parkwell said:

It's because most new builds are so small you can't keep more than half a dozen outfits.

 

 

 

....Can no longer have half a dozen kids either, indirect form of birth control.;)

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Agree 100%. People adjust their spending. Seems insane that I use to spend £60 on a shirt when I could get one in Primark for less than a tenner, and not be able to tell the difference!

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13 minutes ago, ExiledMatty said:

Agree 100%. People adjust their spending. Seems insane that I use to spend £60 on a shirt when I could get one in Primark for less than a tenner, and not be able to tell the difference!

100% agree, I have a couple of cars I can choose from but also a motorbike which is new top end leased etc.....I used it as a bit of a weekend tool and summer use machine. I am an advanced rider (test and all that) so not worried about riding in London. I woke up one morning thinking I am F**** off with the train situation from where I am for occasional travel two or three times a week daily cost peak £14 ticket, £5 parking plus tube if  I use if I don't cuts down work I can do because time walking. By the way train service good its the cost.

So actively using the bike. 1200cc powerful bike still returning 50mpg + cost in and out of London £5 or £6 and if not on a free bay £1 to park in Westminster. Suits and shirts in a friendly client so can change and go wandering for other meetings if I have to

The savings are enormous and I have more fun, I think more and more people are doing this. Bike Bays full up not with scooters but these type of machines - just one example of how you can save a lot more than any inflation rate by thinking about it

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2 minutes ago, Errol said:

So it's the 'weak pound'. Not just the fact that nobody has any money.

Re my post Errol, plenty of people have money in London at least they are just making different choices 

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5 minutes ago, zugzwang said:

Falling demand in the economy + rising energy costs = stagflation.

The death knell of Keynesianism.

 

stagflation-cartoon.jpg

 

 

Are those their garages in the background, or their £250k bijoux, open-plan HtB-funded executive luxury new development commuter village 80sq ft dream homes?

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??   Everyone spends shitloads of money in December.  They buy clothes for themselves, and as presents.  So how exactly is there any sensible point to a m.o.m. clothing spend index- especially for those two months? 

In other news, Supermarkets had a -98% drop in frozen Turkey sales across January.

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29 minutes ago, Shea VanHaven said:

??   Everyone spends shitloads of money in December.  They buy clothes for themselves, and as presents.  So how exactly is there any sensible point to a m.o.m. clothing spend index- especially for those two months? 

In other news, Supermarkets had a -98% drop in frozen Turkey sales across January.

Not everyone.....;)

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2 hours ago, Shea VanHaven said:

??   Everyone spends shitloads of money in December.  They buy clothes for themselves, and as presents.  So how exactly is there any sensible point to a m.o.m. clothing spend index- especially for those two months? 

In other news, Supermarkets had a -98% drop in frozen Turkey sales across January.

Speak for yourself.

 

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4 hours ago, ExiledMatty said:

Agree 100%. People adjust their spending. Seems insane that I use to spend £60 on a shirt when I could get one in Primark for less than a tenner, and not be able to tell the difference!

One of my family used to be a machinist for over 30 years. They said it's hard to tell any difference now between the quality of clothing from likes of Primark compared to M&S etc. 

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13 minutes ago, Assume The Opposite said:

One of my family used to be a machinist for over 30 years. They said it's hard to tell any difference now between the quality of clothing from likes of Primark compared to M&S etc. 

So do they pay their staff similar wages?.....Do they buy their stock/supplies from similar places?....are the rents similar? I thought m&s owned many of their premises.......Who then is gaining/making/profiting from the profits? Shareholders? CEOs? Lenders?.....or Is the money being wasted?;)

Edited by winkie

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8 hours ago, Shea VanHaven said:

??   Everyone spends shitloads of money in December.  They buy clothes for themselves, and as presents.  So how exactly is there any sensible point to a m.o.m. clothing spend index- especially for those two months? 

In other news, Supermarkets had a -98% drop in frozen Turkey sales across January.

I bought a turkey in January. Having Christmas lunch next week ?

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Best place to get clothes-  TK Max.    I have bought some absolutely gorgeous items from there.  Including one exceptionally nice gents long overcoat at around 80% off central London price.  I was shopping in London before Christmas, and I was singularly unimpressed with just about all that was on offer.  If people genuinely believe that a high price tag or poncey label justifies quality, they are very much mistaken.   At one point I was offered a special deal four silk ties for £80, and five for £100.... 

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On 14/02/2017 at 10:55 AM, Shea VanHaven said:

??   Everyone spends shitloads of money in December.  They buy clothes for themselves, and as presents.  So how exactly is there any sensible point to a m.o.m. clothing spend index- especially for those two months? 

In other news, Supermarkets had a -98% drop in frozen Turkey sales across January.

I never buy clothes pre-Christmas  - I always wait for the sale (although that is usually in the gap between Christmas and New year )

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