UK Confidence at new low during August

UK consumer confidence hit a new record low in August as all five measures were down in comparison on the previous month.

According to the latest GfK Consumer Confidence Index, overall figures saw a decrease by three points to -44 in August.

The Major Purchase Index, which includes big ticket items such as furniture, decreased by four points in August to -38; this is 35 points lower than this month last year.

The measure for the general economic situation of the country during the last 12 months is down two points at -68; this is 26 points lower than in August 2021. 

The index measuring changes in personal finances over the last 12 months fell two points to -25; this is 25 points worse than August 2021.

The Savings Index is up five points this month at +18; this is seven points lower than this time last year.

Joe Staton, Client Strategy Director GfK, says: “The Overall Index Score dropped three points in August to -44, the lowest since records began in 1974. All measures fell, reflecting acute concerns as the cost-of-living soars. A sense of exasperation about the UK’s economy is the biggest driver of these findings.

“Our sub-measure on the general economy over the past year has decreased month-on-month since December 2021 – that’s eight months in a row. A similar consistent sharp decline since December 2021 is evident in how consumers see the economy a year ahead and this month’s score of -60 sets a new record.

“These findings point to a sense of capitulation, of financial events moving far beyond the control of ordinary people. With headline after headline revealing record inflation eroding household buying power, the strain on the personal finances of many in the UK is alarming. Just making ends meet has become a nightmare and the crisis of confidence will only worsen with the darkening days of autumn and the colder months of winter.”

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