NEWS29 November 2018

UK consumer confidence at lowest level in a year

Brexit Media News Trends UK

UK – Consumer confidence in the UK has dropped by three points to -13 in November, with purchase intentions taking the hardest hit, according to GfK.

Christmas dog lights_crop

Confidence has fallen across all measures in the index against a backdrop of Brexit uncertainty, the Consumer Confidence Barometer has found.

The index measuring changes in personal finances over the past 12 months dropped by four points to -3, while the outlook for the next year decreased by one point to +3.

Perceptions of the country’s general economic situation have worsened both in relation to the past 12 months (down one point to -29 ) and when thinking about the 12 months ahead (down four points to -32 ).

Meanwhile, the Major Purchase Index, which assesses whether now is a good time to be spending more on large items such as furniture and electrical goods, decreased by seven points to -3 – a drop Joe Staton, client strategy director at GfK, described as “unhappy news for retailers” ahead of the Christmas period.

The Savings Index, which measures people’s attitudes to saving but is not included in the overall index score, has stayed at the same level this month at +12 – four points higher than this time last year.

Staton said: “Overall, we are now back at the -13 level we saw at the end of last year. The next few weeks are highly unlikely to inject any festive cheer, especially if Theresa May’s Brexit deal doesn’t win backing from MPs. The denouement to more than two years of bewildering Brexit wheeler-dealing looks like it will be enacted precisely when many consumers would prefer to be thinking of a well-earned Christmas break. Brexit appears to be turning this year’s ‘season of goodwill’ into ‘the season of uncertainty’.”

The monthly Consumer Confidence Barometer is conducted by GfK on behalf of the European Commission. November’s survey was conducted between 1st and 15th November.