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Visa UK CSI - Consumer spending has weakest start to the year since 2012

Mark Antipof, Chief Commercial Officer at Visa, commented:

“Britons have been in belt-tightening mode since last summer. February’s cold snap certainly didn’t alleviate this situation, particularly when we shine a spotlight on high street spending, and recreation and culture in particular, which saw its biggest decline since April 2010.

“On the other hand, hotels, restaurants and bars experienced another strong month. The resilience of this sector is somewhat unique, having reported uninterrupted growth since February 2011.

“As we look ahead into March, consumer spending is at risk of posting one of the worst Q1 results on record. Retailers will no doubt be hoping that the milder weather will put a spring in shoppers’ steps.”

Annabel Fiddes, Principal Economist at IHS Markit, said:

“The latest Visa UK CSI data pointed to a further modest reduction in consumer spending in February, with expenditure down -1.1% compared to a year ago. The High Street remained a key source of weakness, seeing spend fall for the tenth month in a row, while growth in eCommerce spending continued to disappoint.

“Rising living costs, lacklustre wage growth and relatively subdued consumer confidence are all likely playing a part in the ongoing reduction in household spending. Unless the squeeze on incomes subsides, it looks unlikely that household spending will pick up anytime soon.”

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Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive.

Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second.

The company’s relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and a driving force behind the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere.

As the world moves from analogue to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce.

For more information, visit (www.visaeurope.com), the Visa Vision blog (vision.visaeurope.com), and @VisaNewsEurope

IHS Markit (Nasdaq: INFO) is a world leader in critical information, analytics and expertise to forge solutions for the major industries and markets that drive economies worldwide.

The company delivers next generation information, analytics and solutions to customers in business, finance and government, improving their operational efficiency and providing deep insights that lead to well-informed, confident decisions. IHS Markit has more than 50,000 key business and government customers, including 85 percent of the Fortune Global 500 and the world’s leading financial institutions.

Headquartered in London, IHS Markit is committed to sustainable, profitable growth. IHS Markit is a registered trademark of IHS Markit Ltd. All other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners © 2018 IHS Markit Ltd. All rights reserved. e-mail: economics@ihsmarkit.com

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About Visa Europe

Visa Europe is a payments technology business owned and operated by member banks and other payment service providers from 38 countries.

Visa Europe is at the heart of the payments ecosystem providing the services and infrastructure to enable millions of European consumers, businesses and governments to make electronic payments. Its members are responsible for issuing cards, signing up retailers and deciding cardholder and retailer fees. Visa Europe is also the largest transaction processor in Europe, responsible for processing more than 18 billion transactions annually.

There are more than 500m Visa cards in Europe, while €1 in every €6 spent in Europe is on a Visa card. Total expenditure on Visa cards exceeds €2 trillion annually, with €1.5 trillion spent at point-of-sale.

Visa Europe is an independent business with an exclusive, irrevocable and perpetual licence to use the Visa brand in Europe. Visa Europe works in partnership with Visa Inc. to enable global Visa payments in more than 200 countries and territories.

For more information, visit www.visaeurope.com and @VisaEuropeNews

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