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Dublin Retail Spending Expands For 8th Consecutive Quarter

By Donna Ahern
Dublin Retail Spending Expands For 8th Consecutive Quarter

The value of retail spending by consumers in the Dublin economy continued to expand in the early stages of 2023, research shows.

The latest MasterCard SpendingPulse, produced on behalf of the four Dublin Local Authorities, shows growth rates in Dublin retail spending of 1.6% compared to the previous quarter and 5.8% year on year.

The first quarter of the year was the eighth consecutive quarter in which quarter on quarter growth in retail spending was recorded, and underlines the post-pandemic economic recovery combined with soaring inflation rates for consumer products.

The quarter on quarter expansion in spending in the first quarter was driven by increases in expenditure across all segments covered in the MasterCard SpendingPulse.

Spending Breakdown


Spending on Necessities grew rapidly by 3% in what is likely a reflection of stubbornly high inflation rates for foodstuffs.

Lower, but nonetheless positive, growth rates in spending were recorded in Entertainment which increased by 2% and Household Goods by 1.5% quarter on quarter.

This shows the ongoing willingness of consumers in Dublin to spend on the likes of hospitality and big-ticket household items, in spite of cost of living pressures.

Sales of discretionary items via department and clothing stores rose at a more modest rate of 0.5% in the first quarter of the year.

Expenditure via eCommerce was to the fore in the quarter, with growth of 3.9% representing an acceleration of activity via online platforms.


This follows a modest slowdown in expansion in this category in previous quarters.

The 5.8% year on year growth in retail spending in the capital was primarily driven by a 21.1% increase in expenditure at hotels, bars and restaurants as hospitality’s recovery continued.

Necessities expenditure also contributed growing at 8.4%.

National Spending 

At the national level, spending grew by 6% year on year, the research showed.


This was primarily driven by Entertainment spending which expanded at a rate of 47.9% year on year, surpassing pre-pandemic spending levels.

Necessity sales and discretionary sales recorded growth of 8.9% and 6.4% year on year respectively.

Growth in spending via eCommerce platforms slowed nationally, increasing at a rate of 5.2% year on year.

Dublin Tourist Spending 

Spending levels amongst visitors to Dublin grew by 7.3% in the first quarter of 2023.


At +18.2% spending by visitors from China grew at the fastest rate with spending from other key tourist markets of France, Germany and the UK growing at rates of between 6-7% quarter on quarter.

Expenditure by American tourists however recorded its second consecutive fall in the capital, declining by 7.7% during the period.

Michael McNamara, global head of SpendingPulse, MasterCard, said on the latest findings, Overall retail sales in Dublin as well as Ireland posted solid results in the first quarter 2023.

"Entertainment spending showed significant increases as travel and tourism continued to recover.

"Both discretionary and necessities spending showed solid growth rates in the mid-single digits while household goods spending lagged somewhat in both Dublin as well as across Ireland.”

Read More: Price Inflation Drives Dublin Retail Spending Growth

© 2023 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Donna Ahern. For more retail news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.

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