Blog: Leonie BarrieNot much Christmas cheer...yet

Leonie Barrie | 29 November 2004

I have to confess that Christmas shopping isn't one of my favourite pastimes – but it can't be much more fun for the retailers out there who are in pitched in battle trying to make consumers like me spend money. Here in the UK the sales – more likely to be called ‘Christmas spectaculars’ – have already started, with Tesco knocking 20 per cent off all its clothing and House of Fraser cutting its prices by 25 per cent in a one-day promotion.

In the midst of all this uncertainty, a lot is at stake: it’s estimated that consumers spend an extra £10 billion over the festive period from November through to the January sales. For some retailers, the Christmas spending binge represents up to 60 per cent of their annual business, so it’s hardly surprising they get a little jittery. It’s a little like a game of chicken: will the retailers crack first by offering even bigger discounts, or will customers who delay their shopping lose their nerve waiting for the really big discounts to begin?


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