Hello and welcome to our continued coverage of the global economy, financial markets, euro area and business.
Supermarket giant Tesco outclassed rivals during the crucial Christmas time as the omicron variant led people to avoid hospitality spots and eat more at home.
The UK’s largest grocer increased its market share to 27.9% in the 12 weeks leading up to Boxing Day, an increase of 0.6%, according to data just released by market researchers Kantar Worldpanel.
Online grocer Ocado also had a great Christmas – it was the only retailer to increase sales from last year, while all major grocers increased sales from pre-pandemic levels. from 2019.
Aldi, Lidl and Waitrose also increased their market shares by 0.3%, 0.2% and 0.1% respectively.
Overall, take-out grocery sales have fallen 3% in the past 12 weeks from 2020, when closures forced people to eat more at home. But spending is still higher than before the pandemic, with sales 8% higher than in 2019. And in December, people spent almost as much in supermarkets as they did a year ago.
It shows how the decline in indoor dining, the cancellation of the Christmas holidays, and the shift to working from home have led to more eating at home.
Grocery spending increased in December, Kantar reports, as Omicron fears it will dissuade people from eating out.
People seized the opportunity to enjoy Christmas with friends and family after the muffled festivities last year, and grocery sales reached £ 11.7bn in the month of December.
That high spending figure was only 0.2% down from record sales in 2020, as several areas faced restrictions, and the data suggests that even though there were no formal rules up in the UK this year, many people celebrated again at home due to the Omicron variant of Covid-19.
Tesco’s grocery sales in the 12 weeks to December 26 fell 0.9% from 2020, while rivals Sainsbury’s Asda and Morrisons saw their sales drop 4.4%, 3.9 % and 6.5% respectively.
To come too
Later today, we’ll find out how Eurozone businesses fared last month as the omicron wave hit Europe.
European stock markets opened lower, with the FTSE 100 dipping 18 points after rising 120 points to a new 22-month high yesterday.
- 9 a.m. GMT: Eurozone services PMI for December
- 13:30 GMT: ADP U.S. Private Sector Payroll Report
- 3:30 p.m. GMT: EIA weekly oil inventory figures