U.K. consumers rein in spending as household confidence wanes

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U.K. consumer spending growth slowed in November as concerns about Brexit prompted households to become more cautious with their cash.

Spending grew 3.3 percent in November, the weakest pace since extreme cold weather dubbed the “Beast from the East” kept shoppers away from stores in March, according to a report by Barclaycard published Tuesday. The proportion of U.K. adults who said they remain confident in their household finances slumped to the lowest level since the payment provider started collecting the data in 2015.

The data showed little sign of relief for the struggling retail sector towards the end of a year that has seen a slew of high-street chain closures as consumers held off purchases ahead of the holiday season. Spending at department and electronic stores contracted last month.

Tickets proved a bright spot, Barclaycard said, with Spice Girls concerts and the release of the movie “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” helping push up sales by 30.5 percent. Spending also ticked up at pubs and restaurants.

Bloomberg News
Retailers Barclays U.K.