14 Dec 2016

Aussies to make 85 million purchases in lead up to Christmas

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Australians will flock to the shops in huge numbers in the week leading up to Christmas, with National Australia Bank predicting it will process around 85 million transactions from Sunday 18 December until shops close on Christmas Eve.

NAB Executive General Manager of Consumer Lending, Angus Gilfillan, said Australians are predicted to make more than 85.7 million debit and credit card transactions and ATM withdrawals, spending more than $6.25 billion.

NAB research predicts that, for the first time, non-cash spending will exceed $1 billion each day for three consecutive days, on December 21, 22 and 23.

Thursday 22 December will most likely be the busiest day of the week, with shoppers expected to make more than 15 million purchases on that day alone.

“This will be the busiest week of the year for many businesses, with Aussies spending up in preparation for their Christmas festivities,” Mr Gilfillan said.

“If you want to beat the Christmas crowds, Sunday 18 December is your best bet, with a comparatively fewer eight million transactions to be made over the course of the day,” Mr Gilfillan said.

“We expect the Christmas shopping frenzy to reach its peak between 1:00pm and 1:15pm on Friday 23 December, when around 324,000 transactions will be processed during those 15 minutes – that’s 360 transactions every second.”

“If you do have to shop during the week, early morning and late afternoon are the best times of day to avoid the chaos, with 1pm being the peak time at the checkout most days before Christmas.”

NAB’s research predicts Australian consumers will make 14 million more transactions this Christmas compared to the same time last year. In 2015, there were 71 million transactions processed in the seven days leading up to Christmas Eve.


NAB’s 2016 Christmas Transactions Forecast


Total Transactions Peak Transactions per Second Total Value ($)
Saturday, 24 December 2016 11,058,498 323 $675,655,073
Friday, 23 December 2016 14,723,291 360 $1,093,619,643
Thursday, 22 December 2016 15,066,113 350 $1,145,291,369
Wednesday, 21 December 2016 13,108,608 315 $1,015,049,713
Tuesday, 20 December 2016 12,166,335 293 $950,097,034
Monday, 19 December 2016 11,532,000 296 $904,068,199
Sunday, 18 December 2016 8,053,956 222 $471,619,349

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