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This year’s Santa will bring fewer gifts

28 November 2014 / 22:11:44  GRReporter
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This year – again because of the crisis – the Greeks will spend less money on Christmas gifts than last year, but also compared with the other Europeans.

This is the main conclusion from the Christmas poll of the consulting firm Deloitte for 2014, presenting the purchasing trends among European consumers for this year's Christmas holidays.

Greece’s consumers say they plan to spend € 406 on Christmas shopping this year, shrinking their budget by 12.5% compared with the actual expenses they incurred around the 2013 Christmas holidays. However, European consumers plan to spend an average of € 488 for purchases during the 2014 Christmas holidays, an amount which is only 3% less than what they spent for the holidays in 2013.

Asked what they will spend their € 406 on, Greek consumers reply they will split the amount between food (€ 163), gifts (€ 162) and various social activities (€ 81). With regard to where the gifts will go, 58% of Greek's Christmas budget will be allocated for family gifts (24% for their children, 17% for their partner, and 17% for themselves), and 39% of the budget will be spent on gifts for other adults (22%) and other children (17%). Greeks are expected to spend 3% on charitable activities.

It should be noted that books are the most likely gift for loved ones at Christmas 2014 throughout Europe. The gifts Greek consumers said they would buy were books (49%), clothing and footwear (45%), perfumes and cosmetics (33%). As far as the timing of purchases is concerned, very few Greeks (5%) buy Christmas gifts before December. The market only perks up after 1 December, with 90% of Greek consumers doing their Christmas shopping in December.

Consumer caveats

Europeans believe the economic situation in the future will improve, even beyond last year's expectations. Although Greece is among the countries holding the most negative views of the current economic situation, the survey reveals less pessimism about the 2015 situation.

Europe as a whole, with the exception of the UK, has been experiencing a decline in consumer purchasing power in recent years. Although 2014 purchasing power in Greece has dwindled compared with 2013, the pace of decline has been slower than last year.

In light of these data, Dimitris Koutsopoulos, Consulting Managing Partner and Consumer Business Leader of Deloitte in Greece, said, "the survey shows pessimism about the current economic situation, but also optimism about the future of the economy. The concrete data are the result of the crisis, which pushes consumers towards more rational decisions when considering how to allocate their Christmas budget."

This is the 17th consecutive survey conducted by the company. This year it includes 17 European countries, with Greece included for the fifth time, as well as countries from Southern Africa.

The survey was conducted in the period from the first to the third week of October. A broad representative sample of consumers (17,326 people), aged 18 to 65, were interviewed with the aim of registering the planned expenditure on gifts, food and drinks, for festive lunches and dinners, as well as for other types of entertainment.

Tags: Christmas holidays spending trends European consumers Deloitte survey
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