Retail sector to face more redundancies if Christmas is cancelled

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Christmas David Potts covid-19 pandemic lockdown store closures bank of england
The forced store closures for almost three months at the peak of the crisis are still being felt by many high street retailers
// Brit households spend extra £800 in run-up to Christmas but this year may pan out differently
// The retail sector remains at threat due to the Covid-19 pandemic

New research has found that a typical household in the UK spends over £2500 each month, with an extra £800 spent in the run up to Christmas, the Bank of England estimated.

However, the retail sector remains at threat due to the likelihood of the Covid-19 pandemic dampening sales this festive season.

The forced store closures for almost three months at the peak of the crisis are still being felt by many high street retailers as consumer confidence remains low and the threat of a no-deal Brexit also looms.


READ MORE: Businesses affected by local lockdowns can claim £1500 every 3 weeks


Meanwhile, many stores owe rent money to their landlords and the business rates holiday is due to expire next year.

Morrisons chief executive David Potts said the supermarket has launched a fresh round of price cuts in the run up to Christmas in an effort to persuade bargain-hunting shoppers to visit stores.

The hospitality industry is also bracing itself for a tough Christmas as many office workers continue to work from home so large Christmas parties at restaurants, pubs and bars are unlikely to happen.

Moreover, the Bank of England found that without the government’s job support scheme, the retail sector could be faced with further redundancies.

Just this week, 36 per cent of UK shoppers have said they will decide between two products based on price.

Online retailer Notonthehighstreet said searches for “Christmas” double compared to this time last year, and nearly half of Brits are shopping more with small businesses.

Meanwhile, Dunelm chief executive Nick Wilkinson said the homewares retailer will benefit from consumers staying home rather than celebrating Christmas away from home.

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