Sunny-side up for family finances

Asda's latest Income Tracker reveals that Brits had an extra £18 a week to spend in May compared to a year ago, with the falling price of food, drink, gas and outdoor living brightening up British Summertime

  • The average UK household had £188 a week of discretionary income in May 2015, up by £18 aweek on the same month in the previous year
  • The price of games, toys and recreational activities were 3.4% lower than in May 2014
  • Gardens, plants and flowers were 2.1% cheaper

British Summertime is in full swing as Asda's latest monthly Income Tracker revealed that Brits hadan extra £18 a week in their pockets in May this year. Families across the UK now have £188 a weekto spend on the things they want, rather than the items they need, which is over 10% higher thanthis time last year.

British families can fire up their barbeques without burning a hole in their wallets, as essential iteminflation remained in negative territory (-0.1%), driven by falling food, drink and gas prices. The priceof household gas saw a 4.4% fall, with food and non-alcoholic drinks also falling by 1.8% comparedto the same time last year.

Those looking to burn off their burgers, or simply bring the fun and games to the party, can alsoshare in the good news – the price of games and toys were 3.4% lower in May this year. Equipmentfor sport and open-air recreation was 1.3% cheaper, keeping British families financially fit for thesummer.

Hot on the heels of May’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show, green-fingered Brits have also been given thegreen light to spend on sprucing up their gardens. Everything in the garden looks rosy for gardeners,as the price of plants and flowers was 2.1% lower compared to a year ago.

With wages continuing to grow, at their highest annual rate since February 2009, Asda’s latestIncome Tracker certainly spells a bright summer for hard-working Brits and their families.

Commenting on the findings, President and CEO of Asda, Andy Clarke, said:

"With discretionary incomes continuing to rise families will be able to enjoy more than just theweather this month. Household finances are improving, the purse strings are loosening and we’reseeing people preferring to spend their hard-earned cash on activities for all the family to enjoy.

What’s clear to me is that as family spending power shows no sign of abating and employment levelsremain static, households can be confident in a bright summer ahead.”

Sam Alderson, Economist, Cebr, said:

“Households have now benefitted from 20 consecutive months of year-on-year increases in spendingpower, a strong turnaround from the persistent squeeze seen in recent years. After the tumultuousperiod for household finances, families appear to have used some of the increase in discretionaryincome to set money aside for a rainy day. However, with finances continuing to improve, consumersare likely to enjoy the ability to spend more over the summer months.”

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