BankservAfrica has published its latest purchasing statistics for December 2018, showing that consumer spend over the traditional holiday period in December reflected a year-on-year increase.
According to the group’s data, the value of transactions in December 2018 reached R59 billion, a 15% growth on the previous year’s R51 billion.
“There were 106 million transactions, a 12% growth on the 95 million volume of transactions in 2017,” it said.
The clearinghouse’s data showed that 1 December appeared to be the highest spending day – however, it noted that the spike in volumes could also be as a result of SASSA grant pay-outs.
“The highest spending activity took place in the build-up to Christmas on 21 and 24 December where there were 4.6 million transactions. The other significant shopping day occurred over the long weekend on 14 December with 4.4 million transactions,” it said.
The highest number of successful transactions by an individual South African was 659.
As seen in 2017, consumer spending in December 2018 was the highest at grocery stores, service stations, restaurants and food stores.
“While there was a jump in December spend activity between 2018 and 2017, it is interesting to note that this was largely for affordable and essential household items,” said Martin Grunewald, executive head of Payments Business at BankservAfrica.
“This reflects the spending pressure that consumers have found themselves in the weakened economy,” he said.