Shoppers snap up purchases before VAT rise hits
Shoppers are snapping up large flatscreen TVs and other big ticket items as they make the most of the New Year sales before next week’s rise in VAT.
Electronics goods and particularly TVs are selling strongly ahead of the rise in sales tax to 20 per cent on Tuesday, which will add an extra 2.5 per cent to the price of many goods, say retailers.
Comet, Currys and other stores have stimulated demand by knocking hundreds of pounds off the cost of some older LCD and plasma screens.
Such was the demand that by yesterday the country’s biggest department store, John Lewis, had sold out of all three major marked down LCD TVs on its website, a 42-inch Philips, 32-inch Panasonic Viera, and a 26-inch own-brand, and was also experiencing higher than expected demand for other sets.
“It’s been an aweseome sale period for IT and televisions. TVs in particular have flown out of the door. Many of the lines we’ve brought in for the sales have sold out already,” said Lesley Ballantyne, John Lewis director of operational development.
“We’ve been busier in our technology department than in the days before Christmas.” Across the chain, which has 28 full-line department stores, 12 recorded their best ever trading day on the first day of its sale.
At Comet, there was strong demand for a 32-inch Sony Bravia TV reduced by £147 to £299, and a 50-inch LG LCD TV at £499, a saving of £300.
A Comet spokeswoman said: “The sale has been very busy. But we expected it to be busy because of the VAT rise and because of pent-up demand caused by the weather. TVs have been one of the best-selling lines.”
Other gadgets selling well were iPads and the Kindle - the best-selling gift on Amazon.co.uk this Christmas.
Selfridges reported shoppers queueing for luxury fashion brands such as Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Prada yesterday, three days into its sale.
“All the big ticket items are selling strongly,” said a spokeswoman. “The most successful areas are women’s accessories and luxury shoes. TVs and technology are selling well.”
Research by an online shopping site had predicted shoppers would spend even more money than usual in the New Year sales to beat the VAT rise. Almost one third of 1,004 respondents surveyed by PriceGrabber.co.uk had planned to buy big ticket item. “In previous years, Christmas and January sales have been popular times to purchase big-ticket items. According to our research, consumers that plan to increase their spending pre-VAT are focusing on big-ticket purchases like home furnishings and computers in order to avoid paying the increased VAT on these items,” said its head Justin Sedgmond.
But the splurge may leave pub landlords and restrateurs experiencing a slower January than usual, he warned. “After the VAT increase, consumers will be reducing purchases in some same big-ticket item categories and non-essentials like evenings out.”
Independent Partners; request a free guide on NISAs from Hargreaves Lansdown
Olympic diver has made his modelling debut for Adidas
- 1 Daniele Watts: Django Unchained star's white boyfriend Brian Lucas confirms LAPD internally investigating 'racist' detainment
- 2 Isis release 'Flames of War' video warning Obama of attacks troops could face in Iraq
- 3 Pakistani passenger power forces two politicians off plane
- 4 Say yes to 'no-poo': It's been three years since I stopped washing my hair
- 5 John Travolta addresses former pilot's gay romance allegations publicly for the first time: 'That was the lowest I'd ever felt'
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
iJobs Money & Business
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Comission: SThree: The SThree group is a world lea...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Real Staffing are currently lo...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35,000 first year: SThree: The SThree group i...
£20 - 24k (Uncapped Commission - £35k Year 1 OTE): Guru Careers: We are seekin...
Day In a Page
A listed, four-bedroom farmhouse in the rural hamlet of Rushall with detached barn, four acres of gardens and paddocks
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
A three-bedroom red-brick cottage with outbuildings and pretty gardens, £200,000
This three-bedroom flat within a former textile factory spans the corner of the fourth floor and has a balcony