Household spending power up £4 a week in May
The supermarket found that the average UK household had £171 a week of discretionary income – the income left once taxes and the spend on essentials like rent, utilities and bills have been deducted – in May 2014, which was £4 a week higher than a year before.
This latest increase is the eighth consecutive month that families have seen their discretionary incomes rise year-on-year according to the Asda figures.
Food prices declined year-on-year for the first time since 2006 last month, easing the pressure on family finances and contributing to a sharp slowdown in the rate of annual inflation on essential items, which dropped to just 1.3% compared to 1.7% last month.
The cost of clothes and mortgage interest payments fell 0.1% and 0.6% respectively over the year, providing families with even more financial relief. Travel was also more affordable in May as the cost of plane tickets fell 3.2% in time for the half term break – a stark contrast to the 22% rise in airfares seen between April and May 2013.
Asda president and chief executive Andy Clarke said: “As the country sees discretionary income rise for the eighth consecutive month, my confidence continues to grow that there is a strong and sustained recovery happening in the UK.”
“The rate of essential item inflation is still slowing thanks to a competitive market and family spending power is on the up. I’m interested to see if next month’s regional breakdown of the tracker will show if this continued growth is being felt in every region.”
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