Talking to a business man today, I asked him if it was snow that had affected his end of year sales. He told me "it's people, they simply do not have money in their pockets".
I look at the Observer today and the governments own figures suggest that personal debt is going to be 15% higher than they first projected. It looks like the average debt of a British family will be £77,309 by 2015.
This shows far from tackling debt, the Chancellor is passing debts onto individuals.
The VAT rise in January was not about deficit reduction, it was to fund tax cuts to corporations such as banks, the chancellor claimed this would stimulate the private sector, however this put fuel up by 3pence a litre, utilities costs continue to rise.
There is no sign of improvement in wages and income has in real terms shrank by 5% in the last three years, with anticipated income to grow 1.3% in the next four years, with inflation showing no signs of flattening, we can expect inflation to remain high for a while yet.
The confidence required for growth is not there, people have battened down the hatches expecting the April Cuts to public services and tax rises and reductions in benefits, the Conservative led government has chosen it's course, it's hurting and economy is in flux, this experimental economic policy has forced growth backwards, it's depressed confidence, personal debt is rising, unmemployment is rising, job insecurity is rising.
So all in all it looks bleak.