NEWS20 November 2020

UK consumer confidence falls two points

Covid-19 News Retail Trends UK

UK – Consumer confidence in the UK fell another two points in November, with consumers particularly pessimistic over the health of their personal finances, GfK’s consumer confidence index has found.

Finance chart

The fall in confidence in the November edition of the index to -33 continues the downward trend seen in recent months. October had an overall consumer confidence score of -31 and September’s version of the index registered a score of -25.

The November index found that personal finances over the past 12 months were rated at -16, which was 16 points lower than November 2019 and seven points down from October.

When asked for their views on their personal finances over the next 12 months, respondents on average provided a rating of -5, which was five points lower than in October and six points lower than November 2019.

The measure for the general economic situation in the UK over the past year was unchanged from October at -67. This is 33 points lower than November 2019. Confidence in the economy in the 12 months ahead was rated at -50, which was 16 points lower than a year ago.

The major purchase index, which measures whether people think the time is right to make a major purchase, fell one point to -28, compared with a score of zero in November 2019.

The savings index, which measures whether now is a good time to save, also saw a three-point fall to +11 in November, which was seven points lower than November last year.

The data was based on a sample of 2,000 people and the index is conducted by GfK on behalf of the European Union. Interviewing was carried out between the 2nd and 13th November 2020.

Joe Staton, client strategy director at GfK, said the results showed “people are clearly losing their nerve regarding their personal finances” as the country grapples with a second lockdown.

“This will deal a blow to any future rebound because bullish consumer spending fuels the UK economy and low confidence is the enemy of recovery,” Staton said.

“The second lockdown couldn’t have come at a worse time for the UK’s high-street retailers and it’s no surprise that our major purchase sub-measure is once again mired deep in negative territory.

“On all fronts, economic headwinds still outnumber tailwinds sadly and consumers can be excused for showing little in the way of Christmas cheer.”