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Hungarians tighten belts on Christmas high street

Fewer Hungarians are planning to buy presents this year and those who do will spend less, according to a Kirakat-Ipsos survey published on Monday.

Last year 81% of the population bought Christmas presents; this year only 76% are planning to make purchases. And last year 61% spent a maximum of HUF 30,000, while this year 66% are limiting themselves to the same sum, according to the survey. Only 6% will spend over HUF 50,000 in total.

At the same time, more and more people are turning to the internet to plan their Christmas holiday purchases, the survey of 1,500 people found. Internet window-shoppers have risen to 40% from 31% in a year. Still, only 8% actually use the internet to make purchases, and generally it is people between 18 years and 39 years of age that do so.

Consumer spending has fallen 6.9% year-on-year in the first half of this year while GDP decreased by 7.2%. In Q3 the GDP fell also by 7.2% year-on-year according the KSH's preliminary estimate which does not contain further details. (MTI-ECONEWS)