UK consumers still in pessimistic mood

01 December 2009

LONDON: Consumer confidence levels in the UK remain broadly negative, meaning shoppers are continuing to delay making major purchases, a new survey has found.

According to figures produced by GfK NOP for the European Commission, the Consumer Confidence Index in the United Kingdom fell by four points in November, to –17 points overall.

In assessing the possible economic situation in the next 12 months, sentiment among GfK's panel of 2,000 people was static, at three points, but was up from –36 points posted in the same month last year.

When asked to rate their own financial prospects for the coming year, respondents also remained mostly positive, on five points, down one point month-on-month, but up by 15 points on an annual basis.

However, the barometer tracking the "climate for major purchases" stood at –19 points, down by seven points from October 2009.

Similarly, in measuring the impact of the recession on their personal finances in the period from November 2008, contributors delivered an average total of –14 points, indicating that the overall gloom is yet to lift.

Nick Moon, managing director of GfK NOP Social Research, said "after a fairly steady rise throughout 2009 the index is 20 percentage points above where it was at the start of the year, but this month is the first time the index has fallen for over a year."

Data sourced from GfK NOP; additional content by Warc staff