Consumer confidence stayed steady in June ahead of the EU referendum - but the public was gloomy about the global economic outlook

 
Helen Cahill
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Consumers were no less positive in the immediate run-up to the referendum (Source: Getty)

Consumer confidence stayed steady in June, immediately before the UK voted on its membership of the European Union.

The GfK consumer confidence index for June, which was researched between 1 June and 15 June, remained at May's level of -1.

Consumers were far more positive about their own personal finances than the global economic situation.

The public's attitude towards their personal finance improved, increasing from +4 in May to +6 June - also two points higher than the same period last year.

However, views on the overall economic situation were far less enthusiastic at -13, which is 17 points lower than in June 2015.

The data from Gfk doesn't provide information on post-Brexit attitudes. Initial indications of consumer sentiment after the referendum suggests people intend to save in the coming months, and many say they are less likely to sell their home in the current economic environment - especially Londoners.

Joe Staton, head of market dynamics at GfK, said: "One trend that continued in the run up to the referendum is a deepening pessimism over the general economic situation. As we approached voting day, this was already 18 months lower than in June 2015 and it's almost certain we'll see this worsening when next month's results are in.

"Before the referendum there was an uptick in confidence about personal finances, and as of mid-June this measure was more positive than 12 months ago. But once again it is difficult to see this holding up.

"In these extraordinary consumer circumstances, all bets are off until we all know more. We can expect plenty of volatility in consumer confidence at least until Brexit negotiations are underway. The longer-term mood will then depend on how smoothly those negotiations go."

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