Economy

Consumer confidence jumps six points in May

Due to the easing of lockdown restrictions and vaccine rollout, the UK’s retail sector has received a much-needed boost

Consumer confidence in the UK has increased by six points to -9 in May 2021, according to GfK’s Consumer Confidence Index.

The market research company primarily attributed this to the easing of lockdown restrictions and vaccine rollout, which it believes gave the country’s retail sector a much-needed boost.

While respondents believed the UK’s general economic situation was better than before, up ten points from April, the index measuring changes in personal finances over the last 12 months fell one point over the period.

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Joe Staton, the client strategy director GfK, said: “The financial mood of the nation has bounced back to its pre-lockdown figure of minus 9 this month, meaning confidence has made up all the ground lost to Covid-19.

“UK consumer confidence is being driven by continued optimism for our future personal finances and for the wider UK economy in the next 12 months. The measure for the ‘economy next year’ has recorded a huge 15-point jump this month and, since January, has leapt from -44 to +4.”

He added: “These findings reflect April’s ‘feelgood’ re-opening of outdoor pubs, shops, gyms and hairdressers, combined with continuing vaccination success – and don’t yet include the possible extra boost if green-list vacation opportunities are announced.

“In addition, we’re seeing a healthy five-point uptick in the major purchase index, with more consumers seizing the opportunity to splash the ‘accidental savings’ that some have collected. Now really is a good time to buy. Growing confidence is fuelling the economy and only a reversal to lockdown can dampen this solid momentum.”

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