Australians Are Economising After Spending Up Big In The Christmas-January Holidays

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Australians have zipped their wallets and purses after the carefree spending of the Christmas-New Year holidays.

Online and offline spending was down almost 40 per cent in January compared to the Christmas period.

An analysis of 50,000 users of Pocketbook, which aggregates bank accounts, credit cards and loans to provide a single view of finances, show spending has dropped sharply.

Kids entertainment went to less than 1% from 3% of total spending, travel-related expenses fell to 6% from 10% and home furnishings went to 4% from 7%.

What Australians have done is pay more off credit cards, ending January having on average paid $75 more in repayments than they racked up in debt.

And mortgage or rent payments made up 25% of total spending in January, up from 23% a year earlier.

Online purchases averaged $123, compared to $79 for offline purchases.

Petrol and car costs increased to 10% of total spending from 6%.

“Rising property prices mean Australians are spending more than ever on mortgage and rent payments,” said Pocketbook co-founder Bosco Tan.

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