Families to cut back on Christmas
HOUSEHOLDS are to cut their Christmas spending slightly this year, but we will still be the biggest festive spenders in Europe.
The average family is due to shell out almost €900 each to mark the occasion. Most of the money will be spent on gifts, with the rest going on food and socialising, according to research by Deloitte.
Spending on the festival has dropped back heavily in the past few years, but it is only set to fall by 1.7pc this year.
Households here are to lead the way when compared with the rest of Europe with spending of €894.
Next in the spending stakes are householders in Luxembourg, who will spend €825, followed by consumers in Finland. Most of the money will go on gifts, with almost €500 to be handed over for presents for family and friends.
Another €260 will be allocated to food, with €150 to be handed over in pubs and restaurants as socialising moves up a gear for the Yuletide period.
Around half of households believe they have less to spend this year than they had last year.
Most said that the economic downturn was the main reason they intended to spend less this year, with a quarter of respondents citing taxes and charges on their income as the reason for crimping their expenditure.
But in what will be good news for retailers and the economy, around a quarter of households expect to spend more next year.
According to the research, children are the big winners at Christmas, with around a third of the total spend on gifts by households set to be splashed out on gifts for the little ones.