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Nine in 10 ‘worried about finances’ as cost-of-living crisis looms

·2-min read

Cinemas have replaced online subscriptions on people’s list of priorities, as more than nine in 10 said they are worried about the impact rising bills are having on their personal finances.

Data from Barclaycard revealed that 91% of consumers were last month concerned about the impact rising household bills are having on their personal finances, compared to 88% in May.

Spending on utilities witnessed the steepest rise. Many are cutting back on their energy and water consumption due to a 39.6% year-on-year increase in the cost of household essentials.

Spending on essential items also rose by 4.4% in June compared to the same month a year ago, largely as a result of mounting petrol and diesel prices.

A review by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) this month found that the increase from the crude oil price when it enters refineries to the wholesale price when it leaves them as petrol or diesel has more than tripled in the last year, from 10p per litre to nearly 35p per litre.

Barclaycard added that digital and content subscriptions, which many flocked to over the pandemic, have taken a hit, with 26% reviewing or cancelling their subscriptions.

However, the entertainment and hospitality sectors enjoyed some growth.

The entertainment industry received a 5.3% boost in June compared to May, thanks to Tom Cruise’s anticipated movie, Top Gun: Maverick, and Jurassic World Dominion proving hits with the public.

Takeaways and fast food have also remained popular, recording growth of 2.3% month-on-month and 9.4% year-on-year respectively.

Travel agents have also seen a monthly growth of 6.4%, despite flight cancellations and staff shortages plaguing the airline industry.

Jose Carvalho, head of consumer products at Barclaycard, said: “The continued rise in fuel, food and energy prices means consumers are having to budget and seek out value where they can for both essential and non-essential purchases.

“While this cautionary approach is impacting supermarket and individual basket spend, there are bright spots to be found, with Brits increasing their discretionary spending on entertainment, travel and takeaways as we head into high summer.”

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