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Record Christmas spending predicted

Record Christmas spending predicted

Category: Economy

Updated: 11/12/2009
First Published: 11/12/2009

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Consumers are set to ensure a bumper Christmas for British businesses in the coming month, with £24,000 a second to be withdrawn every second at the peak of the festive season.

An estimated £17.8 billion of cash is to be withdrawn over December, according to Barclays, with the busiest day for ATMs expected to be Friday 18 December. The rush of last minute shoppers is expected to see an incredible £24,000 a second withdrawn between 12 noon and 1pm that lunchtime.

The news will give a boost to retailers after figures published earlier this week showed spending was not as high in November as had been expected.

A record £23 billion is predicted to be spent on debit cards through this month, a four per cent increase on December 2008. Department stores will attract some £650 million of debit card spending, while jewellers can expect to see £210 million of debit card business.

Pubs and restaurants will also cash in, with £600 million of bills settled by debit cards.

A bumper month is expected for supermarkets as consumer stop up on food and drink, amounting to £5 billion, whilst over £1 billion will be spent at petrol stations up and down the country.

Brian Cunnington, head of Debit Cards for Barclays, commented: "We all know Christmas is the season of goodwill but that usually means it's the season for spending as well. With so much shopping and entertaining to be done debit cards are set to be well used throughout the month."

Further good news for the economy has been delivered by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, which has said that indicators point more strongly to recovery in the UK economy than they did this time last month.

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