Hospitality up 4.4% in January

Hotels, Restaurants & Bars posted a solid increase of 4.4% in expenditure in January, albeit one that was softer than in December according to Visa’s Irish Consumer Spending Index, produced by IHS Markit.

This measures expenditure across all payment types (cash, cheques and electronic payments).

Elsewhere, rates of expansion quickened in the Food & Drink category (up 1.9%) and in the Recreation & Culture category in the first month of the year (up 2.1%).

But the Index also pointed to ongoing muted spending trends in general at the start of 2019. Although stabilising following the annual fall of 0.4% in December, spending was broadly unchanged – up just 0.1%. This represented one of the weakest performances since the series began in September 2014.

As has been the case in recent months, the high street remained the key source of weakness for household spending. Moreover, Face-to-Face expenditure was down for the third month running, with the fall of 5.3% year-on-year the sharpest in the Index’s 53-month series history.

In contrast, eCommerce expenditure continued to rise sharply, with the rate of growth at 9.8% little changed from the previous month.

Food & Drink category spend was up 1.9% in January  and the Recreation & Culture category saw growth of the 2.1%.


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