Irish household expenditure across all payment types (cash, cheques and electronic payments) was up +6.1% year-on-year in June according to Visa’s latest Irish Consumer Spending Index.
The data shows that the pace of growth slowed slightly compared to previous months (+9.2% in May and +9.6% in April) but was still slightly faster than the average for the series which began in September 2014.
The increase in spending was driven by a range of factors, including increased demand with travel agents and airlines, as well as a rise in car sales.
During June, the Irish Travel Agents Association reported that 50% of their members had experienced an increase in bookings for summer 2016, which helped boost the Recreation & Culture sector, with spending up +13.9% year-on-year.
Furthermore, increases in direct bookings with airlines and new car sales in June also led to the Transport & Communication, recording a double-digit increase (+11.0%) in expenditure.
The success of Ireland’s football team saw a number of airlines put on extra flights during the month, with airlines like Ryanair reporting an increase in passenger traffic during June.
The Society of the Irish Motor Industry also reported a 12% increase in new car sales during the month during the same period.
Spending via eCommerce was up +15.3% year-on-year in June, while Face-to-Face growth only rose +2.0% year-on-year, the weakest rise in spending on the high street since December 2014.
A slowdown in expenditure was also recorded at Clothing & Footwear stores, with spending up just +0.3% year-on-year. This was the weakest rise in the current 20-month sequence of expansion.
Ireland Country Manager at Visa, Philip Konopik says, "Irish consumer spending remains buoyant, with expenditure during the second quarter of 2016 +8.3% higher compared to the same period in 2015."
He added, "While every sector benefited from the increase in spending, there was a marked contrast between the monitored categories with only two sectors recording double digit growth during the month."