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Decline in Irish consumer spending follows Rugby World Cup triumphs, despite notable achievements.

Irish Consumer Spending Declines Despite Rugby World Cup Victories

Bank of Ireland Reports Decline in Consumer Spending

The Bank of Ireland (BoI) has revealed a worrying trend of declining consumer spending, with a significant 8% decrease in September 2023. This trend has been observed since 2021, and the ‘back to school’ period has been identified as a primary factor. The social and retail sectors have been hit hard, experiencing substantial declines.

Impact on Social and Retail Sectors

Jilly Clarkin, head of customer journeys and SME markets at the bank, reported a 14% drop in social spending and a 7% fall in the retail sector. Travel spending has also taken a hit, with car rentals down by 30%, accommodation by 21%, bus travel by 14%, and toll fees by 6%.

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Demographic and Regional Spending Patterns

Spending among teenagers fell by a notable 20%, with reductions also seen among the 18-25-year-olds (6%) and the 36-45-year-olds. In certain regions, such as Donegal, Kildare, Laois, Mayo, and Meath, spending drops of up to 9% have been experienced.

Impact on Entertainment Sector

The entertainment sector has suffered as well, with a striking 54% decrease in cinema spending. Florists and barber shops have also seen less business, recording drops of 8% and 7%, respectively.

Irish Consumer Spending in France

Despite the overall decline, Irish consumer spending in France saw an uptick of 9%. This surge can be attributed to fans attending Rugby World Cup matches in Bordeaux, Nantes, and Paris. However, even though viewership for Ireland’s match against South Africa was high, no increase in business spending was noted.

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Impact on Food and Drink Establishments

Food and drink establishments have also felt the pinch. Pub spending decreased by 19%, restaurants by 17%, and fast-food outlets by 14%. Despite Ireland’s Rugby World Cup victories, such as the clash against the Springboks, overall card spending declined.

Hope for October Expenditure

Clarkin suggests that October’s expenditure could potentially see an increase if Andy Farrell’s team progresses to the Rugby World Cup final stages.

This article provides valuable insights into the decline in Irish consumer spending and its impact on various sectors. With the ‘back to school’ period being identified as a significant factor, it is essential for businesses to adapt their strategies to navigate these challenging times.

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