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Millennials shun Christmas spending splurges due to Brexit fears

Millennials are shunning Christmas shopping sprees amid fears Brexit will hit their pockets, a new independent national survey has revealed.

Independent survey data of 1000 UK drivers obtained by leading car leasing company Select Car Leasing shows over a third (36%) of British shoppers aged 25-34 will tone down their festive spending because of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union on January 31. 

Furthermore, across all UK drivers, a quarter (27%) of those polled are tightening the purse strings over the festive period because of the uncertain political situation.  However, one in five people admits they won’t let the ongoing Brexit wrangling affect their Christmas shopping habits. 

Select Car Leasing company director James O'Malley said: “December is usually the most expensive month of the year for many. 

“But with Brexit just around the corner, it seems people are more reluctant to splash the cash on Christmas celebrations this year. The truth is that nobody knows exactly how Brexit is going to turn out, so perhaps it is wise not to hit your rainy day fund too hard.” 

The UK’s exit from the EU was due to take place on the 29th March following the referendum vote in June 2016, but the deadline was subsequently extended twice.  It is now due to take place at the end of January 2020, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson given a resounding mandate to do so with the Conservative Party’s election win this month. 

But it appears the previous political struggles are being felt in shoppers’ wallets, according to an independent national study of 1,000 people conducted for Select Car Leasing by One Poll.  One in four respondents said they either strongly agreed or somewhat agreed with the suggestion they are planning to spend less money this Christmas due to Brexit uncertainty. 

Empty Nesters Continue To Spend Over Festive Period

And when it comes to the ages of shoppers, Millenials appear to be ditching their free-spending reputation for a more careful approach. Some 36% of survey respondents aged 25-34 admit they will spend less this Christmas due to Brexit, compared to 15% of those aged 55 plus. 

Select Car Leasing company director James O'Malley added: “Millenials often get accused of frittering away their money on smashed avocado and fancy coffees, but they will be holding back this Christmas. 

“Meanwhile, those aged more than 55 seem less concerned about restricting their spending despite not knowing how Brexit will affect their finances. It’s also interesting that Londoners will be toning down their Christmas shopping sprees while those in the West Midlands will have the tills ringing in their ears.”

Greater London Feels The Pinch

Greater Londoners will be the most spendthrift festive shoppers, with half (50%) admitting they will restrict their spending this December.   This is followed in the regional rankings by North West (34%), Scotland and the South West with 30% each. 

On the other hand, West Midlanders are most likely to flash their credit and debit cards with 60% of shoppers set to ignore Brexit fears, East Anglia comes next with 53%, followed by Northern Ireland’s 52%. 

Established in 2004, Select Car Leasing is one of the UK's largest independent specialists for car leasing as well as commercial and van leasing. 

Data Source: Independent primary research study conducted by One Poll of 1,000 UK drivers for Select Car Leasing 

Survey Question: We plan to spend less money this Christmas due to the uncertainty around Brexit. 5pt attitudinal agree/disagree scale

Table 1: All Respondents Data, Gender Split (sum strongly/somewhat agree and strongly/somewhat disagree)  

Table 2: Age Splits

Table 3: Region Split

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