M&S to research how tax affects customersMonday, 12 July 2010
Marks & Spencer has initiated a major market-research
programme tofind out how tax rises and public spending cuts will affect customers.
The retailer has already imposed a highly prudent approach to buying autumn clothing amid concerns of a downturn. The company's fears could emerge at its shareholders' meeting this week. Its chief executive, Marc Bolland, said: "All the external indicators say people for the next year will have concerns on their consumer spend. Therefore, we are very cautious."
But Mr Bolland, who took over the top job in May, is no longer prepared to rely on outside indicators and has set-up a widescale research initiative inside M&S to report on consumer reactions to the rise in VAT to 20 per cent, and on other measures in last month's