Retailers competing for customers in the last full trading week before Christmas are having a difficult time, according to the latest forecasts. The number of visitors is expected to fall this week by about 3%, as the buyers with little money in spending.

Springboard's forecast adds to the bleak picture of the industry in the important festive trading season as consumers are unsure what Brexit will mean for the economy, and that their finances this year will limit the purchase of gifts.

"We do not expect it to be a great week," said Diane Wehrle, Insights Director at Springboard. "Consumers are nervous about what could happen in the new year, especially in the context of Brexit. So people are not ready to splash around for Christmas and return.

"It's not because people spend online. they just do not give out, "she added. "We all face risks as fares and electricity bills are rising, and we all know that."

She said that rising wages have been of little consolation to consumers in recent months, who have invested in savings and have additionally been indebted during a prolonged period of inflationary wage increases since the 2008 crisis.

Retailers striving to attract customers in the last few days of shopping before Christmas are already offering huge discounts. After a terrible month in November, Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley described as "the worst in history, unbelievably bad".

"Nobody could have budgeted for that," Ashley City analysts said last week, when he presented the half-year results of sports retailers. "Retailers just can not stand this November. It will literally smash it to pieces. "

The expectation that the number of visitors will fall again in the week to Saturday, December 22, follows a terrible weekend for the main roads of Great Britain, which have stopped by the sinking temperatures and freezing rain. On Saturdays alone, visitor numbers in the main roads fell by an estimated 9% compared to the same period last year. Including shopping centers and retail parks, the decline has fallen by 8%.

Maplin, Toys R Us and Jacques Vert have all collapsed in recent months, but some retailers and restaurant groups are struggling financially and trying to close deals or negotiate rent reductions.

Gourmet Burger Kitchen: The upscale burger chain intends to close 17 of its 85 restaurants as part of bankruptcy proceedings known as the Voluntary Business Agreement (CVA).

House of Fraser: The department store chain is expected to close about 12 stores after being bought by Mike Ashley from the administration. It had agreed on a CVA, under the 31 shops should be closed, but this has expired in the administration.

home base: The DIY chain closes at least 42 stores after completing a CVA organized by the new owner Hilco. The restructuring expert bought the DIY chain for £ 1 from the Australian companies Wesfarmers, who failed an attempt to bring the Bunnings chain to the UK.

Pound WorldThe discount retailer closed all 355 stores, losing 5,100 jobs following its inauguration in June.

Cau: The owners of the steakhouses Gaucho and Cau went into administration in July, closing all 22 Cau restaurants and losing 750 jobs. The Group's lenders have since bought the 16 Gaucho outlets.

kraamzorgThe chain closes 60 of its 137 stores after agreeing to a CVA in May. Further closures in July mean 900 jobs.

Carluccio & # 39; s: The Italian chain secured a CVA at the end of May to close 30 of its 99 restaurants.

New look: The chain closes 85 deals in a restructuring plan announced earlier this year. Its chairman, Alistair McGeorge, said the future of another 39 stores was doubtful as talks with landlords continued.

Carpetright: The retailer received a CVA in April to close down 92 of its 409 UK stores in September, losing 300 jobs.

Prezzo: In March, the Italian restaurant group received a CVA to close 94 out of 300 restaurants, losing 500 jobs. Rent reductions were agreed for 57 other locations.

Jamie & # 39; s Italian: The chain closed six locations in 2017. This year, a CVA has closed down about a third of the 35 stores that make losses.

Byron: The upscale burger chain closes up to 20 of its 67 restaurants, according to a CVA agreed in January.

DebenhamsThe department store chain under pressure has said it could close up to 50 of its 165 stores and wants to eliminate more space by adding gyms and other services.

MRS: The High Street Stalwart wants to close 100 branches – one third of their main business until 2022 as part of a radical transformation plan.

Wehrle said much of Saturday's lost trade was unlikely to be fully recovered on the following days because people had other plans for those days or found alternative gifts, such as buying a concert ticket or one day.

However, Rachel Lund, head of Insights and Analytics at the British Retail Consortium, said that at this point in the festive shopping season, everything was still to play: "We've had a slow start to the Christmas season, but with changing technology and shopping habits, many consumers will give up their purchases until the last week before Christmas – historically most important for retailers."

Big high-street names like Primark, John Lewis and Superdry have all warned that trade has been difficult in recent weeks and more retailers are expected to follow suit. Budget fashion chain Bonmarche said last week that hopes for full-year earnings were dashed by "unprecedented" trading conditions in the UK's main roads.

To confirm the trend, Visa's latest British consumer index found that spending in November declined 0.7% year-on-year as people shied away from business. According to the report released on Monday, October saw a decline of 0.2%.

Retail spending fell 0.9% last month, while online spending slowed to 0.4% in November (2.6% in October).

The Visa report showed that the largest expenditure losses were in transport and communications, clothing and footwear as well as leisure and culture. The best sectors were hotels, restaurants and bars, followed by food and beverage retailers.

"Despite the temptation of Black Friday, consumer spending fell again in November, as in seven of the past eleven months," said Adolfo Laurenti, Visa economist.

"Although inflationary pressures have eased somewhat and wages and incomes have improved, consumer confidence has continued to deteriorate as Brexit continues to be insecure. The economic environment should remain difficult for retail at least in the short term. "

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Part of the shift to lower spending is that consumers are looking for options that require less material, with plastic and over-packaged items increasingly being avoided, according to Tim Hunt, co-editor of Ethical Consumer.

He said, "We expect consumers to focus more on ethical purchasing decisions than ever before in response to the growing environmental concerns that have increased this year. Recently, consumers have been alerted to the negative effects of palm oil and looking for sustainable palm oil or palm oil free products. "

According to an Ethical Consumer report, spending on used clothing for environmental reasons increased by 22% in 2017, while spending on ethical food and drink increased 16%.