Fourteen days that will test retailers
11 December 2012 - 10:57 by Simon Crisp
It is now just two weeks until Christmas Day, which means the window for buying presents and groceries for the big event is closing fast.
It is now a week after Cyber Monday, the busiest period for safe shopping online of the year, but the digital tills are still ringing around the clock at e-commerce sites.
So while the online market remains strong and will continue to figuratively and literally deliver the goods right up until Christmas, it seems that the next 14 days are being portrayed as a bit of a make or break period for the high street.
The Guardian reports that a new study from Which? predicts that 10.2 million households across the country are still being squeezed by the current economic climate. This means on average, people will be spending 30 percent less on Christmas 2012 than they did last year.
On average, the typical household will spend between 634 and 835 on Christmas presents alone, with an additional 161 being splashed out on festive comestibles.
The ways that people are paying for Christmas are also changing, with people aged between 18 and 24 turning to bank overdrafts, while others seek out payday loans to make ends meet.
Of course by using safe shopping online, it should be easy for consumers to make significant savings this Christmas. Analysts believe that consumers are pushing their festive spending back to closer to the big day, because they want to take advantage of the best possible deals.
Meanwhile, retailers are bringing sales forward to before December 25th because the long standing January Sales blowout is no longer as attractive as it once was.
In all, the UK will spend 29 billion on Christmas this year, according to the Money Advice Service, although at the moment, even the experts cannot agree on what a typical Brit will invest in a good time in 2012.