Shoppers rein in spending after splashing out in run up to Xmas

SHOPPERS reined in their spending in the early weeks of January, a survey has suggested.

Slightly more retailers said that they had experienced poor sales than good sales during the first two weeks of 2014, according to the CBI’s distributive trades survey.

However, just 14 per cent more firms reported an expansion than a contraction in sales, compared to the same period in 2012, according to the survey. For the time of year, nearly two thirds of respondents said that the volume of sales was average.

Official figures showed that sales rose by 5.3 per cent year-on-year in December. “With rapidly falling unemployment bolstering consumer confidence, retailers should be able to look forward to the rest of the year with a reasonable degree of confidence,” said Martin Beck of Capital Economics.