M&S Money Reports Record Number of Foreign Currency for Sterling Exchanges
M&S Money reports weak pound sees travellers digging out foreign currency to exchange for sterling in time for Christmas.
PR9.NET December 12, 2008 - As the pound continues to fall in strength against foreign currencies, Christmas shoppers have been digging-out their old foreign currency to exchange for sterling.
M&S Money (http://www6.marksandspencer.com/ ) has reported that November saw a record number of people exchanging foreign currencies for sterling across the network of in store bureaux de change.
There has been a particularly high demand to exchange US dollars for sterling - a 53% increase in turnover over the past three weeks compared to the same period last year. Other popular 'buy back' currencies in November were the Swiss Franc and Japanese Yen.
Fraser Millar, M&S Head of Travel Services, said: "This time last year travellers heading to America were getting a great deal - almost US$2 for every £1. At that rate you would be wise to hold on to any dollars brought back to the UK and use them on your next trip."
He continued, "Now the pound has weakened against the dollar - around US$1.44 for every pound - so travellers are getting less for their money in the US. Travellers returning home with cash that may have previously held on to the currency are now keen to grab the relatively low 'buy back' rates."
Previous research carried out by M&S Travel Money (http://www6.marksandspencer.com/pages/default.asp?PageId=Home&Product=TM )* found that 80% of Brits bring back foreign currency when they return from a break abroad. Almost a third (28%) of those return home with more than £50 worth.
Over three quarters (76%) of British travellers that bring back foreign money said they do not bother or just forget to change the money back into sterling and a third (33%) simply leave it untouched in a drawer, wallet or handbag.
Fraser added: "As families continue to face financial pressures, the trend to keep currency rather than change back to sterling is likely to decrease. M&S offers a commission free buy-back service, so travellers don't have to worry about bringing lots of cash home with them."
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M&S Money (the trading name of Marks & Spencer Financial Services) was founded in 1985 as the financial services division of Marks and Spencer Group plc. The company is now a top ten credit card (http://www6.marksandspencer.com/pages/default.asp?PageId=home&Product=CC ) provider and the second largest travel money retailer in the UK. M&S Money also offers a range of insurance cover, including home insurance (http://www6.marksandspencer.com/pages/default.asp?PageId=home&Product=HI ) and car insurance (http://www6.marksandspencer.com/pages/default.asp?PageId=HOME&Product=CI ), as well as loans, savings and investment products.
In November 2004, Marks & Spencer sold M&S Money to HSBC, one of the world's largest banking and financial services organisations with over 9,500 offices in 85 countries and territories.
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