BEIJING: Shoppers in China boosted their outlay in several core product categories at the end of 2010, but popular sentiment remains somewhat mixed.

The regular Bank Card Consumer Confidence Index, based on transactions completed using credit cards and jointly published by news agency Xinhua and China UnionPay, reached 85.92 points in December 2010.

This constitutes a modest 0.06 point uptick month-on-month, and equates to a 0.91 point decline on an annual basis.

Among the primary contributors to the positive short-term trend was the widespread use of promotions, and governmental efforts to control inflation covering various consumer staples.

The volume of supermarket transactions rose 2.3% in December, with Christmas, New Year's Day and other holidays encouraging a focus on special offers and deals.

Combined expenditure levels in the food, entertainment, jewellery and department store sector climbed 12.4% from November to December.

Elsewhere, apparel similarly attracted greater interest, according to the study.

Bonus payments from employers, plus additional benefits such as double time during the final quarter, also temporarily raised purchasing power, fuelling acquisitions of white goods, digital electronics and even cars.

Data sourced from People’s Daily; additional content by Warc staff