Belfast Telegraph

Consumer spending hit by VAT

The VAT rise has had a "noticeable" impact on spending habits, with two out of five people cutting back on buying goods since the start of 2011, according to a new report.

A survey of over 2,000 adults by eBay found that over half had less money to spend, blaming government policies, although many held the previous Labour administration responsible.

Half of those questioned said there had been a noticeable impact on their cost of living because of the higher rate of VAT.

Most feared that tomorrow's Budget will further hit consumer spending although consumers and retailers are hoping a deferral of a planned increase in fuel duty will lift pressure on households.