UK Spending Index: Scotland was the only UK region to see decline in final quarter of 2022

LEADING UK digital payment solutions provider takepayments has released their UK Spending Index, which analysed millions of card payments to reveal what regions have seen the highest and lowest increase in consumer spending on the high street from 2020-22.

The Spending Index has revealed that Scotland had the lowest spending per person in any UK region in 2022 and it seems the cost of living crisis has hit Scottish households the hardest. These results support recent news that the Edinburgh Festival is struggling financially and ticket sales fell 25% in 2022 as the disposable income of Scottish consumers took a hit. Jeremy Hunt has now announced in his Spring Budget that Edinburgh’s cultural festivals will receive £8.6m funding in an attempt to boost the Scottish economy.

 The Scottish postcodes with the highest card payment spending figures for 2022 are:

  1. EH4 (Edinburgh)
  2. KY12 (Fife)
  3. EH48 (West Lothian)

The Scottish postcodes with the lowest card payment spending figures for 2022 are:

  1. KA19 (South Ayrshire)
  2. PH12 (Perth and Kinross)
  3. PH32 (Highlands & Islands)

Overall findings from the spending index revealed: 

  • Spending in restaurants and bars increased 20% in 2022, while many other industries declined
  • Spending in Northern Ireland grew twice as fast as the UK average
  • The travel industry saw the highest amount of growth year on year, with a 32% increase in spending from 2021-2022

Jodie Wilkinson, Head of Strategic Partnerships at takepayments, said in response to the data:

“Looking at the data, it’s clear that 2022 has been a challenging year for businesses in Scotland. Even in the industries where we saw significant increases in spending, the news is dampened by how this has been affected by weak year-on-year comparisons and record inflation.

“However, predictions that inflation rates could drop off in 2023 would spell good news for those businesses that have felt the pinch in their input costs. This year could spell some much more positive outcomes for the Scotland’s small business population. 

“Even in the midst of economic pressure, there are still opportunities for small businesses to thrive. It’s also reassuring to see that Scots continue to support local bars and restaurants with record spending. We hope to see the healthy rate of new business registrations in that sector continue to stay strong.”

You can view the full Spending Index online here:

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