Nine out of 10 mums have already started doing the Christmas shopping in a bid to spread the load, according to Asda’s Mumdex report.

Almost half are worried about how much Christmas is going to cost, while a quarter of families will be spending less than last year on seasonal treats, the report said.

Over 20% of mums have already set aside a cupboard for Christmas food – and more than half have started hiding presents around the house.

The survey showed “guilt was rife”, according to Asda, as mums worried about not being able to afford to buy as many presents as they would like for their kids.

“What this latest Mumdex research makes clear is that mums have one eye on balancing the day-to-day, and the other firmly on the future family events, with Christmas top of their list,” said Asda COO Judith McKenna.