Trump and Brexit unsettle Irish shoppers ahead of Christmas

Consumer and business confidence dipped in November...

Trump and Brexit unsettle Irish shoppers ahead of Christmas

Brian Lawless PA Archive / PA Images

Irish consumer confidence hit its lowest point of 2016 during November, according to the Bank of Ireland Economic Pulse.

The index, which combines the results of the Consumer and Business Pulses, fell by 8.6 to 85.8 in November. Its data shows that both consumer and business confidence fell during the month.

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Households are more downbeat about the economy and their own financial prospects as 2016 draws to a close.

It notes that "firms in all sectors pared back their expectations for near-term business activity."

Dr. Loretta O’Sullivan, Group Chief Economist, Bank of Ireland commented on the report:

"Following closely after the UK’s decision to leave the EU, the outcome of the US election and industrial unrest at home look to have unsettled consumers and firms in November, with the Economic Pulse taking a hit."

Looking into the new year - two in five firms expect to increase their spending on investment in 2017 compared to this year, with one in two planning to spend the same amount.

Some 20% report that they will spend more on their Christmas shopping this year:

"The weakness of Sterling is a headwind for this sector with some consumers set to travel to the North to shop. The festive season is fast approaching and one in five expects to spend more on presents this year compared to last, though some Christmas shopping is likely to be done over the Border," Dr O’Sullivan added.