British consumers are upbeat after General Election outcome

Chris Papadopoullos
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Confidence among UK shoppers is at elevated levels despite dipping slightly this month
UK shoppers were slightly less confident this month, but confidence levels remain relatively high, according to survey figures published today.

The consumer confidence index put together by market researchers GFK edged down to a score of one for May, from April’s four.

However, it is up on the same month last year when it scored zero. The index is also high by historical standards – it has been in negative territory for most of the last decade.

“Despite May’s dip in consumer confidence, it is still at a high level compared to long-term norms and the outlook seems largely bright for consumer spending given largely favourable economic fundamentals notably including high and rising employment, negligible inflation and some pick-up in earnings growth,” said economist Howard Archer from analysts IHS.

Separate confidence figures released yesterday by pollster YouGov showed confidence slightly rising this month. Nick Moon, a director at GFK, was less optimistic and believes the dip reflects badly on the government.

“In the short term, this suggests that despite rewarding them with a majority in the House of Commons, the public are not too confident about economic life under the Conservatives, given that almost all of the fieldwork for this month was conducted after the election, and the index stands three points lower than last month,” he said.

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