U.K. consumers spent significantly more on debit cards in the first two weeks of January but a mounting cost-of-living crisis is expected to take a heavy toll in 2022.
That’s according to Lloyds Bank, which found that spending rose 27% from the same period of 2020, before the pandemic hit, with 42% more splashed out at restaurants and bars. The lender said the pandemic had encouraged people to use their cards more for every day spending.
Still, with all U.K. nations under work-from-home guidance, spending on commuting fell 13%, though that was almost treble the level in 2021 when Britain was in full lockdown. Restrictions to combat the omicron variant of Covid-19 were relatively loose and are now being lifted.
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“While the increase in spending could be considered a sign of consumers ongoing resiliency, rising inflation and concerns around the cost of living could leave a lasting impression on household finances,” said Gabby Collins, payments director at Lloyds. “Spending power is likely to continue to be dictated by the impact of the pandemic on the wider economy.”
©2022 Bloomberg L.P.