United Kingdom: Consumer sentiment brightens in August but remains pessimistic
August 31, 2018
The GfK NOP consumer confidence indicator rose from minus 10 points in July to minus 7 points in August. However, the index remains firmly entrenched in negative territory, where it has been since April 2016, highlighting that consumers are broadly pessimistic.
August’s uptick reflected consumers’ improved views of the general economic situation over the last 12 months, and their personal financial situation over the last 12 months and for the year ahead. In addition, consumers grew markedly more likely to make major purchases, with the major purchase index jumping back into positive territory. Going forward, recent signs of faster wage growth, if maintained, could support confidence. However, ongoing Brexit uncertainty and tighter financial conditions will likely weigh on sentiment.
Author: Oliver Reynolds, Economist