Ireland: Consumer confidence plunges to over six-year low in October amid elevated Brexit uncertainty
The KBC Bank Ireland/ESRI consumer sentiment tumbled even deeper into pessimistic territory in October, falling for the fourth consecutive month for the first time since late 2012. The index slid to 69.5 in the month from 75.3 in September, thus moving further below the 100-threshold separating optimism from pessimism among consumers and slipping to an over six-year low.
October’s deterioration in consumer confidence largely reflected ongoing fears around the prospect of a disorderly Brexit, but may also have been due to a measure of disappointment with the “no deal” Brexit Budget for 2020 given the absence of “broadly based adjustments to welfare rates and income taxes”. The sub-components that deteriorated the most were households’ outlook on their personal finances in the year ahead and their propensity to make major purchases, along with consumers’ perceptions on their personal financial situation in the past 12 months. Respondents’ outlook on the Irish economy also worsened, much the drop was much more moderate. By contrast, households’ views on future unemployment were largely stable.