Leisure Spending, JDW, Brexit

July 13 2016

Barclaycard has updated on Q2 spending, says ‘business as usual’

  • Barclaycard says consumer spending was +3.1% in Q2
  • April was +1.9% (known to have been sluggish) & May & June were +3.6%
  • Spending in pubs & restaurants (+12.1% and +11.6%) was impacted by football & by higher contactless limits (£20 to £30). This will annualise out in September
  • Increased card usage does perhaps devalue somewhat the above data
  • BCD data showed spending holding up ‘comparatively well’ in the week following the EU vote with spend +2.1% on the prior week

Barclaycard’s sting in the tail:

  • BCD says its ‘headline number hid some mixed underlying news’
  • It says the usual pay-week spending rise in pubs & restaurants didn’t happen in June
  • It says it saw ‘both entering into negative territory – dropping 0.44 per cent and 0.46 per cent respectively in 7dys beginning 24 June’
  • It says this is in ‘stark contrast’ to the 20.5% & 20.1% growth seen in same week of May
  • It says ‘consumers may have adopted a cautious mind-set around discretionary spending in the days after the referendum result.’

Wetherspoon & other comments:

  • JDW cautioned against doom-mongering (this from Mr Martin) but said trading was improved
  • It did suggest that 3% LfLs would be hard to maintain & said they could slip to nearer 1%
  • There ‘was no sign of a slowdown’ but added ‘it had ‘prospered in previous recessions’
  • Incoming comments have been thin on the ground with operators maybe too busy or too depressed to respond. Some suggested it was business as usual


  • Too early, far too early but at some point accusations of doom-mongering & calls to ‘banish pessimism’ will be superseded by hard facts